The Student Newspaper of DePaul University

The DePaulia

The Student Newspaper of DePaul University

The DePaulia

The Student Newspaper of DePaul University

The DePaulia

2x Big East Freshman of the Week Meghan Scholz continues to ‘shut everything down’

Katie Wright
Scholz cheers on her teammates during DePaul’s September 23 match against Big East opponent Villanova.

DePaul volleyball’s freshman middle blocker Meghan Scholz made her presence known in the Big East Conference with an emphatic start to the season. Despite only joining the team in August, Scholz has ascended to the top echelon of middle blockers in the Big East and the entire NCAA. 

In just over a month, Scholz ranks 21st in blocks, second among freshmen, and first in the Big East Conference entirely in blocks. Her performances earned her the title of Big East freshman of the Week for two consecutive weeks, highlighting a dominant performance on the road against crosstown rival Loyola of Chicago. In this 3-0 sweep, Scholz recorded six kills on 10 attempts, six blocks, and her collegiate career’s first serving ace. 

Scholz said she uses these accolades for motivation and to bolster her confidence as the team’s starting middle blocker. 

“It definitely means a lot,” Scholz said. “I was not expecting anything like that coming in and to get it two weeks in a row? I mean I was already shocked the first week, so getting it a second week in a row definitely gives me a lot of confidence.”

Head volleyball coach Marie Zidek is well aware of the problems Scholz can cause for their opponents.

“She brings a lot of length at the net,” Zidek said. “Our opponents really have to run a sophisticated offense to get the ball around her.”  

Zidek said that teams have to play DePaul differently because if they put the ball in front of her, “she is shutting it down.”

Scholz has done a lot to impress her coaches and teammates with her readiness for collegiate-level play. Junior setter Ashley Kudiamat spoke about setting her newest middle blocker. 

“She is doing very well,” Kudiamat said. “I have enjoyed setting her since she is very easy to set. She is always working very hard getting up to the net to get kills in addition to getting tons of blocks and she has been very helpful to the team.” 

Scholz, a native of Tomahawk, Wisconsin, previously expressed how the speed of club play in her home state compared to the collegiate pace of play was a learning curve for her. 

“My senior year of club volleyball was really competitive,” Sholz said. “We were top 20 in the nation, and I feel that if I did not go and play for a higher level club my senior year, I would probably be a lot more behind on the speed and nuances of the game.” 

After last week’s game against Villanova, Scholz expressed how she is gradually getting more comfortable with the level of play in the Big East. 

“[My confidence] is slowly increasing every time I am on the court,” Scholz said. “There is still a lot I can work on in terms of blocking because it is definitely a much faster-paced game. The girls on the team are constantly talking me up and my confidence is pretty good right now.”

When asked about matchups she is looking forward to this season, she mentioned DePaul’s Oct. 4 matchup against Marquette is circled on her calendar because of some personal ties to the matchup. 

“I grew up watching them [Marquette] since they are in my home state,” Scholz said. “Hattie Bray, their middle blocker is most definitely one that I am looking the most forward to. We got to play against each other then [in high school] so I know that will be a really exciting matchup for me.”

The level of intensity that she expressed for the matchup is nothing out of the ordinary for Scholz. Her excitement and will to win are apparent in every match. 

“I know that when I get on the court there is a little fire inside of me that I cannot really control,” Scholz said. “Ever since I was a kid there has been something about this game that really gets me excited, and now that I am at this level it has become even more intense.”

Scholz and DePaul now have their eyes set on their road matchup against Marquette Oct. 4. 

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