June 12th, 2019

12 Questions with Jessica Just

Samantha Stallings

Staff Writer

12 Questions with Jessica Just
photo provided by the Just family

On a weekly basis, Louisville Catholic Sports post the KIVA “12 Questions” feature that highlights a volleyball student-athlete in the community. If there is a specific athlete that you’d like to know more about, email future suggestions to sstallings92@yahoo.com

For 25 years KIVA has been home to volleyball players in the Louisville community. From club level training to Volleytots, we offer programs for all ages and levels. KIVA invites you to visit them at www.kivasports.net! Where champions come to train.


Name: Jessica Just

Grade: Junior/Incoming Senior

Current School: Mercy Academy

Club Team: KIVA 17 White


1. What got you started playing volleyball? I used to go watch my dad play in the night leagues at my grade school and it looked like fun so I joined a team as soon as I could.

2. What’s your favorite aspect of the game? I really like how competitive it can get. I love seeing everyone get so into a sport and a game and the intensity makes it so much fun. I also enjoy the really close games and all the cheering when someone gets a good kill, block, or dig.

3. What is your favorite meal? My favorite meal is either my dad’s spaghetti and garlic bread, or Fazoli’s fettuccini and breadsticks. 

4. Who is your favorite player? Why? My favorite player is probably Kelly O’Neil. I was a freshman when she was a senior and I remember watching her and being so fascinated in how talented she was. She got to every ball and it seemed like she never had a bad game. She may not realize, but she inspired me to be a better player and to go for everything.

5. What was the best coaching tip or advice you received to improve your game? A coach told me, “You don’t get anything you don’t go for.” He meant that for volleyball and life as well. It made me realize that things won’t come to me and if I really want something I need to go after it.

6. The most fun drill for you at practice is... why? I love playing dig or die. It’s really fun because you can’t let the ball touch the ground and you have to make crazy moves to get a touch on the ball so you don’t lose all your points. It gets wildly competitive at our practices and it makes it really enjoyable for everyone.

7. If you could visit anywhere in the world where would it be? I have always wanted to go to Greece ever since we learned a lesson in 7th grade about the Greek gods and the Greek culture.

8.Do you prefer playing offense or defense? Why? I absolutely love playing defense. I like reading the hitter and knowing exactly where to move to be in the best position for a perfect dig. It’s really fun to get good digs in long rallies also.

9. If you could have a training session with one player or coach, who would it be and why? Melissa Starck-Bean, because she makes you realize that something may feel right and work for you most of the time, but it’s wrong. She teaches the right way to do things and she helps me get in the habit of the right ways that work every time instead of the wrong ways that work some of the time. 

10. I love volleyball because...? I love volleyball because I love to see me making others and myself happy. I like to literally feel the feeling of reward after working as hard as I can to do the best that I can do for the people around me. It makes me feel good to know that I tried 110% and left everything I have on the court. Another reason I love volleyball is because it is the one thing that can take my mind off of other things that are bothering me. I love having practice when I’m in a bad mood because it snaps me out of my mood right away. I also love playing with some of my best friends.

11. If you could be an animal, what would it be and why? I would want to be an alligator, because I love to float around in my pool all day and be left alone while doing it. Alligators like to float around in swamps and normally people and other animals do not mess with an alligator. Also, most alligators in the U.S. are found in Florida which is my favorite place in the entire world.

12. What is your favorite experience/ moment playing volleyball? My favorite moment playing volleyball would have to be beating Assumption in the JV state finals last Mercy season to end Assumption’s perfect season and to keep the JV state championship title. I was on JV my sophomore year and my junior year and we were able to win back to back state championships and both moments were two of my favorite moments ever. It doesn’t get better than winning with my best friends beside me two years in a row.


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