Four years ago, middle blocker Libby Bresser stepped on the court for the first time as a Rambler. Now, she begins her final season, closing out her volleyball career.
Bresser, a 21-year-old native of Waupun, Wisconsin, led the team last season with 96 blocks. Last year marked her third consecutive season leading the team in that category, and she ranked second on the team in total points scored.
Bresser, an Ad/PR major, also tallied 25 solo blocks last season, earning her the second-place spot on Loyola’s all-time single-season list. She also boasts 61 solo blocks in her career, placing her at third on Loyola’s career chart in the rally scoring era.
After three tournaments to start the 2014 campaign, conference play has begun for the Ramblers.
“The first couple of tournaments each had their own challenges,” Bresser said. “We can learn and grow from them for the rest of the season.”
After two conference games, the Ramblers are now 1-1 in the Missouri Valley Conference and 5-6 overall.
As one of the most experienced players, Bresser is a leader on the team, although the fans may not hear her on the court.
“I would consider myself a leader, but there are more vocal girls on the court in the leadership role,” Bresser said. “I choose to lead by example.”
As she has gained experience both on and off the court, Bresser has seen herself develop over the past four years.
“I’ve seen myself grow in my relationships in terms of my friendships, volleyball and my family,” Bresser said. “I’m very satisfied … to get to where I am now.”
Her journey to collegiate volleyball success started with recruitment her junior year of high school.
“My best friend in high school went to a volleyball camp our sophomore year,” she said. “My junior year I went to the camp and during the winter [that year] I was recruited by Loyola. I looked at a few other schools but committed to Loyola. Coming from a small town, I wanted to experience the city life.”
Looking back on her decision to attend Loyola, she was certain Loyola was the school for her.
“The coach asked if I was 100 percent on board to make that commitment and I was very excited about it,” Bresser said.
For her final season as a Rambler, Bresser’s and the volleyball team’s goal is to make a name for themselves by winning the MVC.
“We’re taking it one day and one weekend at a time,” she said about the Ramblers’ strategy.
Before the 2014 season started for Loyola, Bresser participated on another volleyball team: Team Adidas Midwest. Over the summer, the team traveled to the European Global Challenge 2014 in Croatia.
The team finished in fourth place, and Bresser enjoyed her time in the Eastern European country.
“The trip left Team Addias Midwest speechless with the beautiful views and culture,” Bresser said in a blog post on the Loyola athletic website.
Once this season is complete and Bresser’s volleyball career at Loyola is over, she plans to find an internship for the spring semester. She’s interested in pursuing sports marketing or advertising.
While she hopes to stay in Chicago for a few years after college to stay close to the friends she’s made while at Loyola, she wants to return home to Wisconsin in the future.
The Ramblers face conference rival Missouri State on Sept. 26 in their first match of the season at Joseph J. Gentile Arena.