October 9, 2012 Updated: July 3, 2013 at 9:32 am
Taylor Cross has her college decision out of the way before the end of her junior season.
The Pine Creek standout planned to give her commitment to the coaches at New Mexico on Tuesday night, as members of the Lobos staff traveled to watch her match against Fountain-Fort Carson.
Cross’s father, Don Cross, said Taylor made up her mind following an unofficial visit to Albuquerque this past weekend that concluded with a scholarship offer.
“Taylor really liked the coaches, players and the school,” Don Cross said via email, adding that his daughter carries a 4.37 GPA. “She’s interested in going to law school and they have one of the top law schools in the area.”
Cross leads the Eagles (10-3) with 160 digs and 235 received serves. She also led the team in both categories as a sophomore.
According to her father, New Mexico has told Cross that she would have a chance to compete for the starting libero position as a freshman. The program’s current libero is a senior. The opportunity to play right away led to her decision, as did the close proximity to home and several annual trips to Mountain West programs in Colorado that will allow family and friends to attend her matches.
Other choices for Cross included Rice, Maryland, Rutgers and Utah State.
Cross is the second from her class to make an early commitment to a Division I volleyball program, joining Doherty’s Haleigh Washington (Penn State).
“I know it seems very early for her to be committing as other offers may be on their way,” her father wrote to The Gazette. “But she said she wanted to get it over with so she could enjoy playing and not be all stressed out wondering if/when the next offer would be coming. Her goal was to play Division 1 volleyball and she made it happen.”
The Pikes Peak region has a number of players in addition to Cross and Washington who have made non-binding verbal commitments.
The list of seniors includes Simmone Collins of Pine Creek (Notre Dame), Cheyenne Mountain’s Monique Domme (Pepperdine), Lewis-Palmer’s Claire Felix (UCLA), TCA’s Jessica Klingensmith (Butler), Erica Lambert (Abilene Christian, which will be Division I starting in 2013) and Doherty’s Cierra Simpson (Texas-San Antonio).