Alumni Athlete Focus: Ashley Talley, St. Joseph High School

Ashley Talley | Submitted
Ashley Talley | Submitted

We’ve started a new feature on The Doings that looks at alumni from our area’s various high schools that played sports at the major college and/or pro levels. This edition features former St. Joseph High School volleyball player Ashley Talley.

Birthplace: Maywood

Current profession: Fraud analyst for Bank of America, head varsity volleyball coach

High school graduating class: St. Joseph High School, 2009

Age: 24

Q. When did you start playing your sport and why?

A. My interest in volleyball started when I was in the third grade, I didn’t actually start playing until the fifth. I started playing, because volleyball was something that was completely new to me. At that age I’d heard of basketball, soccer, or even swimming, but never about volleyball players. My interest grew tremendously once I figured out I was good at it (haha).

Q. What did you enjoy most about playing at your high school?

A. I enjoyed the fact that we were a family. At St. Joe’s everyone had their specific groups of friends but our bond grew past clicks and circles as a class. From my memory everyone got along. Everyone wanted to be a part of the team and contribute, not only on the court but off the court.

Q. At what point did you realize you’d be able to play in college (and the pros, if applicable)?

A. I actually started my college search a little late. By the end of junior year in high school is when I actually had interest and realized that I could play at the college level.

Q. What was the transition like between playing in high school and in college?

A. Two things I tell my players: 1) The next level is more intense (as far as playing), the pace is very quick; 2) Focus will be required in everything you do, knowing those two things will help athletes transition go a little smoother. The realization of those things for me did not come until later.

Personally, a huge thing for me also was strength and conditioning. I went from a few laps around the gym before practice, to three practices a day, two of which we strictly workouts.

Q. Did you have a mentor/s that helped you along the way? If so, tell us a little about him/her.

A. My mentors through everything was my mother and father (Arthur and Corrine Talley). They are the ones who opened the door for me. My mother made game tapes, she started my recruiting profile for college coaches to review. They literally did everything for me in that aspect. Because I went to college in Baltimore, Md. it was a little difficult for them to assist in that way.

Q. What are you doing now and does anything you learned in sports at St. Joe’s still impact you today?

A. What I have learned at St. Joe’s, and in life in general, has impacted what I do to this day. One thing is that life and living comes first. Being an athlete and gifted is a bonus to living in the real world.

Q. Looking back on your experience from St. Joe’s, through your current situation, is there anything you would change?

A. No, I wouldn’t change anything. My trials and tribulations made me who I am. I am a true believer of everything happens for a reason. Even within my storms came light. Once the light shines you can look back at your storm and say I made it though. I would never want to change that feeling.

Q. Anything else you’d like to say?

A. As a coach my goal is to motive, encourage and mentor students who were once like myself. My ultimate goal is to help student-athletes get into college. As a coach that is the more important and rewarding aspect of the job. That is what I am striving for, to place students in a settling where they can succeed and be ready for the next level in life and in sports.

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