SIERRA VISTA — After four years in the Buena volleyball program, Emileigh Furry went out with a bang, winning 5A Southern Region Offensive Player of the Year and making first-team All-Region.
“Coach (Breanna) McDaniel told me at our playoff match versus Paradise Valley that I won the offensive player of the year award, and I was so excited,” Furry said. “I went crazy and started dancing around when she told me because I was so honored to receive the award and of how well we did this year.”
Furry led the region with 507 assists, 84 aces and a hitting percentage of .275.
The Buena senior placed high expectations on herself heading into her final year and more than exceeded them.
“This season, I was really hoping to break 1,000 career assists and I actually ended up breaking Buena’s career assist record, which was an unexpected achievement,” she said. “I definitely met my goal of having fun as well, and these have been some of the best moments of my life.
Furry finished her Colts career with 1,468 assists.
“Each year I’ve worked extremely hard to get better, and it has brought me to where I am today,” she said.
Furry singled out coach McDaniel for impacting her career.
“Coach Bre has been incredibly helpful throughout my career and she was my club coach throughout my high school career as well,” Furry said. “She helped me develop my setting skills and taught me how to transition from playing at the middle school level to competing at the varsity level.”
McDaniel knew what Furry was capable of.
“I was not surprised by it, Emileigh does a lot for our team not only with setting, but attacking,” McDaniel said. “Emileigh is one of the best players in Southern Arizona, she comes in each day and pushes herself and her teammates to improve.”
Emileigh also singled out former Colts head coach Todd Bradbury.
“Other than my family, the person that helped me become the player I am today was Coach Bradbury because he helped me believe that I could be the player he knew I could be,” Furry said. “He helped me fine-tune my skills, and he shaped me into the player I always wanted to be.”
Bradbury was the varsity coach for the first three years Furry was on varsity. Bradbury was the assistant coach this season.
Though Furry will leave Sierra Vista upon graduating high school, she will not be too far from Colts Country.
“After high school, I plan to go to the University of Arizona with a full tuition academic scholarship,” Furry said. “I want to study either accounting, data science or something else to do with math.”
To Furry, Buena volleyball is special for multiple reasons.
“In my opinion, Buena volleyball is unique because our whole program from varsity to JV has some of the most amazing girls who are extremely kind and supportive,” Furry said. “We have worked really hard to create a culture where everyone feels loved and supported, and I think we all succeeded.
“I have extremely close bonds with all of the girls on my team, and throughout the whole program. I have the closest relationship with Britney Comolli, as we have played volleyball together since our sixth-grade year.
Comolli led the Colts with 206 kills this season.
“We have been best friends since middle school, Britney is amazing, and I love that I have been able to share these volleyball moments with her,” Furry said.