Columbus High senior Brianna Gogins began her month with a Class AAAA state volleyball championship on Nov. 2.
On Thursday, nearly two weeks later, she finished her high school volleyball career by signing a letter of intent to play at Florida International University.
“I’m blessed to have this type of opportunity,” Gogins, a middle blocker, said after the signing ceremony in the Columbus High auditorium. “I’m glad all my hard work paid off.”
It certainly has. Consider the numbers and accolades for the Lady Blue Devils’ to player:
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For 2013, she totaled 379 kills, 91 blocks, 51 aces and 89 digs. For her career at Columbus, those numbers are 831, 251, 126 and 183, respectively. She was a four-year player and earned an All-Area, All-State and All-Bi-City selections in 2012. In 2013, she was named an Under Armour All-American (top 100 nationally), Georgia Class AAAA Player of the Year, Georgia Senior All-Star, All-State and was the Area Player of the Year.
The All-Bi-City team won’t be officially released for a couple weeks, but you get the idea.
The team’s success followed suit during her four years. It made the final four in 2010, quarterfinals in 2011, was the state runner-up in 2012 and finished with a state championship this season.
Not coincidentally, Gogins scored the final point, her last in high school, that gave the Lady Blue Devils the title.
“It was awesome, indescribable,” she said of the feeling after winning state. “I can’t really say much. It was awesome. It made my whole season, and then signing just tops it all off.”
Gogins said she signed with FIU for a handful of reasons, including the campus, the coaches and a good educational program.
“I visited a bunch of schools, and it just seemed like the best fit for me,” she said. “The campus is beautiful. It’s amazing. There’s really good treatment of the athletes, and they have a great engineering program.”
There are nerves, of course, that come with moving on to the next level.
“I’m going to be playing with grown women,” Gogins said with a laugh.
She said she just has to reminder herself of the work she has put in.
“You can do this,” she said she’d tell herself. “Work hard, and you’ll be fine.”
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