Following an exciting weekend for the North Carolina volleyball team with key road wins against rivals N.C. State and Duke, Anita Babic was named ACC Freshman of the Week. She holds this title for the second week in a row.
Babic, a first-year student from Phoenix, has been crucial to the team’s success this season as a setter. Thus far, she has already picked up over 660 assists, highlighted by six games with 40 or more assists — including 42 this past weekend against Duke.
“I think the fact that we had two back-to-back ACC wins against our rivals, really says a lot for the quarterback on the court," head coach Joe Sagula said. "The quarterback on the court is the setter."
Following the loss of primary setter and graduate student Meghan Neelon, as well as three reserve setters Annabelle Archer, Maylen Mitrovich and Emma Reynolds, the team had no returning players at the position — giving Babic a prime opportunity to shine.
“We knew we were going to have a setter come in and play for us quite a bit,” Sagula said.
However, adjusting to playing volleyball at the collegiate level is no easy feat.
“It’s a lot more time management," Babic said. "I mean, obviously, it’s higher stakes because we’re at the collegiate level, but it’s also more fun and the competition is better."
Babic emphasized the support she has received from her teammates, captains and coaches in helping with this transition.
Babic is the second UNC volleyball first-year to be recognized for back-to-back ACC Freshman of the Week honors this season. Libero and defensive specialist Maddy May was named to the honor in the weeks of Sept. 12 and Sept. 19.