Xavier alumna and beach volleyball player Trinity Cavanaugh was one of 16 girls from across the United States recently named an All-American by the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA), earning a spot on the 2019 AVCA High School Beach Second Team All-America.
Cavanaugh, a pre-business major, is now on the beach volleyball team as a freshman at Texas Christian University (TCU).
Even though high school athletes often dream of playing on college teams, achieving this athletic milestone isn’t easy. Cavanaugh has committed years of hard work, dedication and discipline to the sport she loves, which helped her earn All-American status.
Cavanaugh, who describes herself as having “always been a multi-sport athlete,” started playing volleyball in middle school during her seventh and eighth grade years at Christ Lutheran School.
“I quickly discovered that I really enjoyed playing,” Cavanaugh said, “so when I was 12, I tried out for an indoor volleyball club, and I was selected for the second team. This was a traveling team and was the start of indoor play for me.”
After playing indoor for a few years, she found herself looking for something new, and not long after that, she heard about RPM Sand, which describes itself as “the premier youth beach volleyball club in Arizona.”
“My freshman year was my last year playing for the indoor volleyball club team,” Cavanaugh said. “My sophomore year, I decided to move solely to beach volleyball and the RPM Sand program because I was having more fun with that. I stayed with RPM through my junior and senior years.”
At Xavier, Cavanaugh was a member of both volleyball teams, playing beach her freshman through senior years and indoor her freshman, sophomore and junior years.
“With indoor volleyball, players train specifically for one position,” Cavanaugh said, “but with only two people playing beach, they must excel in all the fundamentals, like serving, passing and hitting, to be successful. Indoor is specialized and beach is much more well-rounded.”
While the AVCA beach All-American award is separate from any high school honors, it is a significant achievement for Cavanaugh. She’s earned many accolades from her alma mater. During her time at Xavier she’s been the offensive player of the year, selected MVP her senior year, won four state championships and was chosen for the All-Arizona Beach Volleyball Team.
“One of my immediate goals here at Texas Christian University is to be on the starting lineup,” Cavanaugh said. “I also want to continue to get better as a player and teammate by improving my skills as I grow my leadership abilities. My focus is directed on these coming four years. I want to have a really good college career here.”