Mackenzie Fidelak gave a verbal commitment to Stanford volleyball, Niwot Athletic Director Chase McBride said in an email to CHSAANow on Monday.
“It’s kind of always been my dream school,” Fidelak said. “My parents have always been really hard on me in school, so academics have always been a priority, and it’s a high level of volleyball. I think it’s the perfect place.”
Fidelak made second team all-state last year with 3.8 kills per set. She has a .329 career hit percentage, 774 kills and 536 digs.
“I always try and work as hard as I can and push those around me to get better,” Fidelak said. “When the people around you are getting better, you’re getting better.”
Fidelak is in the International Baccalaureate program at Niwot and has a 4.318 grade point average. She also runs track at the school.
“It’s hard,” Fidelak said on her balancing act. “There are definitely some nights where I think, ‘How late can I push this? How late can I stay up?’ But, you get through it, and at the end of the year, you look back like wow, I just did that.”
Stanford, the defending champion, is currently the No. 1 team in the nation and is tied for the most titles in Division I women’s volleyball with seven.
“In terms of leadership, it’s something that I’ve always worked on,” Fidelak said. “It’s not necessarily one of my natural abilities to tell people what to do or anything like that. I hope that a coach now, especially being a senior in this program, would say that my leadership has gotten better than it was.”
Fidelak and No. 6 Niwot start the 2017 campaign with a home game on Sept. 5 against Thompson Valley.
“I really want to make it past pool play at state,” Fidelak said. “I’ve been to state twice now, and both times we went 1-1 in pool play and didn’t quite make it through.”