Allen wants more victories before ISU career ends

Emily Arthur

Often described as one of the most exciting Cyclone volleyball players, junior Nanette Allen is ready to end her last season in an ISU uniform on a strong note.

This current season will be Allen’s last as a Cyclone. She redshirted her freshman year and will graduate in the fall of 2001.

The Pasco, Wash., native came to visit Iowa State with her grandfather, and both Allen and her grandfather instantly “fell in love with Iowa State.”

“The people here are so friendly, and I just think it’s a great university,” Allen said. “I’m graduating in the fall, and to come out with a degree from Iowa State University, I think it’s phenomenal.”

Although this is her final year, Allen still has plans for the rest of the volleyball season.

“As far as team wise, I obviously want to win some more games,” she said. “We play Texas tonight, and I know that’s a team we can beat. We should’ve beat them the first time we played them, but I think we’re ready this time.”

Allen chooses not to focus on individual goals and says that team goals are definitely more important to her.

“Individually, I don’t think that this team is focused on individual accomplishments,” she said. “We don’t really have room for that. I just want to be a team player and get the job done. Whatever I can do to fulfill that role, I will.”

It’s easy to sense when talking to the players and coaching staff of the ISU volleyball team that Allen will be greatly missed following this season.

“On the court, Nan is a good leader,” said ISU Head Coach Linda Grensing.

“When you watch her play, she’s one of the best athletes we have in the gym. She’s really got a tremendous work ethic so when she’s in here every day, you put those two things together and it’s just really inspiring,” Grensing said.

Perhaps one of the people who will miss Allen most is senior Stacy Nicks.

Nicks and Allen have played together for four years and have encountered many different obstacles.

They’ve seen three different coaches, losing seasons, a coaching scandal and many other tribulations.

“Stacy and Nan have been through so much together. I think it’s neat that the two of them have allowed themselves to get through some tough times together,” Grensing said.

“I think that they’ve had a couple of years where they’ve really seen some changes in the program, and they’re proud of what they see happening and realize that they’re an important reason why those changes have happened. I think that has really brought them together because they see what they’ve both gone through.”

Both Allen and Nicks speak very highly when talking about one another.

“I’m really going to miss Stacy a lot,” Allen said. “I think this last year, I’ve really gotten close to her, and I’ve learned a lot about her. She’s just a wonderful person and she’s so funny. You could be down one day and she’d just do something funny and brighten up your day.”

Nicks had similar things to say about Allen.

“Nan is just a fun person to be around,” Nicks said.

“She’s serious at times and goofy at others. I say we get along pretty well. She’s also very determined. All in all, she’s just a great teammate.”

The future holds dreams and aspirations for Allen. She will graduate as a communications major, and says her future plans are to sing.

“That’s my dream, so hopefully that’s what will come true,” Allen said.

“It’s what I’m trying to get started, and it’s something I’ve wanted to do for a long time.”