Volleyball players push for next level

Krajicek, Bedlan commit to playing college volleyball

As college sports recruiting starts to occur at a younger age, it puts some high school athletes under a lot of pressure. Two seniors at Yutan High School are relieved they already made the big decision. 

Senior Heidi Krajicek sets the ball to her teammate for the kill. Krajicek has been named captain two years in a row. (Shaylynn Campbell)

Senior volleyball players Heidi Krajicek and Haley Bedlan both decided to continue their academic and athletic careers in college. 

“It feels great to finally be committed,” Krajicek said. “I don’t have to worry as much.”

Returning varsity setter Krajicek signed to Midland University in Fremont, Neb., in the month of July. Krajicek decided on Midland for multiple reasons, one being the volleyball coach and the strong team.

“I really like their coach…he reminds me a lot of Coach Biermann, and Midland’s volleyball program is really good, they’re rated number three right now,” Krajicek said.

Krajicek also knows multiple people there. So, she already has her foot in the door at Midland, and she’s just “really excited to play.” 

Senior outside hitter Bedlan is also excited about her commitment to the College of Saint Mary in Omaha, Neb., which she made in April. 

“When I went to tour the school, I absolutely loved it. I fell in love with everything about it,” Bedlan said.

Senior Haley Bedlan passes the ball to the setter. Bedlan leads the team in kills this season. (Shaylynn Campbell)

Bedlan also has a head start in her college career. One of her best friends currently plays for the College of Saint Mary and said she loves it. So, Bedlan wanted to see what it was all about. 

“I remember watching volleyball on TV and thinking I’ll never be good enough for college, and now I finally know I am. I am going to be one of those people, and it makes me feel really good,” Bedlan said.

Although both girls are very invested in their colleges right now, they didn’t always think that way. 

“I wasn’t sure if I wanted to play in college,” Krajicek said. 

Her mom kept her going farther into the recruiting process even though Krajicek wasn’t sure if it was for her.

 “I finally got to the point where I was all in,” Krajicek said. 

College commitment doesn’t come as a surprise to their teammates because both seniors have played a very strong role on the Yutan volleyball team. Both have been captains for multiple years and have kept the team together since they were young. 

“Heidi does a great job of leading on the court as our setter, and Haley can always pick us up and go on good runs,” sophomore captain Ellie Lloyd said.

While the girls wait for their college careers to start, they are focused on their current high school season and their team goal of qualifying for state.

“I really want my name on the back of a T-shirt,” Krajicek said.