Thu, May 12 2011 07:29 PM Posted By: John Philip Wyllie
In the fall, junior Jenelle Hudson led the Bonita Vista Barons to a 9-1 Mesa League girls volleyball record and a league co-championship with Eastlake. The dominant outside hitter displayed a rare combination of power, intelligence and skills that resulted in her being named the league’s Player of the Year.
Not one to rest on her laurels, Hudson traded in her net and volleyball for a hoop and basketball during the winter sports season. The 5-foot-8 Hudson excelled on the hardwood as a power forward, averaging a team high 13.1 points per game. Largely through Hudson’s efforts, the team went 6-4 in league play and qualified for the San Diego Section playoffs.
When winter turned into spring, Hudson headed outdoors as a member of BV’s track & field team. Given her athleticism and versatility, it not surprising that Hudson is currently competing effectively in several events.
“I triple jump, high jump, long jump and throw the discus,” Hudson said as she awaited her next high jump at a recent meet.
She is good at all of her events, but her ability to hurl the discus has really turned some people's heads. Ironically, she only began competing in discus a couple of months ago.
“I threw for a personal best 106 (feet) today in practice,” she offered.
Tosses such as that will have her competing alongside the county’s top discus throwers.
“Coach (Joe) Sheffield is the one who talked me into coming out for track,” she said. “I was just looking for another way to stay in shape. Competing in track helps me with my other sports. My workout targets individual parts of my body and it improves my overall strength. That helps me in volleyball and basketball, too.”
As much as she enjoys competing in track and basketball, these pale in comparison to her love for volleyball. After all, she comes from a volleyball family. Her mother, Carolyn, starred at Sweetwater High and later at the University of Hawaii. Her uncle and BV coach Woodie Taeatafa has coached many elite teams over the years.
Her cousin, Jennifer Saleaumua, who went on to University of Nebraska and professional stardom, is without a doubt the greatest female volleyball player to ever emerge from the South Bay. Hudson hopes to follow in her footsteps.
“I am hoping to get a free-ride to college and then play professionally overseas,” she said
With her talent and versatility, the sky is the limit.
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