Senior Arielle Goodson (Grand Rapids/Central) of the 2010 Ferris State University women's volleyball team is the subject of a feature article in this Thursday's (Sept. 16) edition of The Grand Rapids Press.
The feature story on Goodson was written by The Grand Rapids Press Sports writer Steve Ungrey and is titled - Late to sport, Grand Rapids Central grad Arielle Goodson finds volleyball success at Ferris State.
Arielle Goodson and her teammates at Grand Rapids Central played
basketball during the fall season of their freshman year. What to
do in the winter?
They tried volleyball on a whim, and from the first hit, Goodson discovered she liked the sport.
In four years, Goodson transformed from an uncoordinated freshman who was 6-foot and weighed less than 100 pounds on the Rams JV team to a powerful 6-2 athletic senior middle hitter for Ferris State University.
She and the Ferris team traveled to Grand Valley State for a Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference match Wednesday. And while the Bulldogs lost 25-21, 21-25, 25-20, 25-22, Goodson proved how dominant she can be, totaling 18 kills.
"When Arielle came to our camp, she worked hard," Ferris State coach Tia Brandel-Wilhelm said. "She didn't touch a volleyball until she was a (high school) freshman, but when we saw her play as a junior, there was a lot of enthusiasm.
"You could tell she was definitely an athlete and a competitor. You knew she'd learn quickly, and she did. She gained years of experience in a short amount of time."
Dana Ruttle, a 5-7 senior libero from Reed City and Goodson's best friend on the team, has noticed the improvement.
"She still had to learn a lot when she joined the team," Ruttle said, "but Arielle came in and quickly adjusted to compete as a freshman."
Goodson adjusted so well that she was fifth overall on the team in kills (146) her first season. By her sophomore season, Goodson was second (262). A year ago, she recorded a team-best 376 kills and 120 blocks.
She also was first in block solos (44) and block assists (76) as the Bulldogs finished 19-12.
Goodson finds it hard to believe her eight-year volleyball career is ending.
"Just coming in as a freshman and looking back on my career, it's surreal how far things have come," she said. "And I couldn't have done it without my teammates. It's been a good four years."
Elissa Trevino, Goodson's volleyball coach at Grand Rapids Central, noticed she had potential.
"I was the JV coach when she got moved up as a freshman," Trevino said. "She (was) still getting that coordination. She just came back a different person (after college camps before her junior high school season). She was a goofy girl kind of falling all over the place, and here she was now a completely different player."
With her college career almost complete, Goodson plans to pursue a career in social work after graduation.
"I think in her perfect world she'd help refugees transition to life in the United States," Brandel-Wilhelm said. "She has a huge heart and is one of the most caring individuals I've known."
Click on this link to access The Grand Rapids Press' feature on Arielle Goodson: http://www.mlive.com/smallcolleges/grandrapids/index.ssf/2010/09/late_to_sport_grand_rapids_cen.html