The trip is possible because older sister Meghan, 21, hit it big. She has become a professional volleyball player in Hungary. Kamryn, 18, who just began her collegiate volleyball career at Clemson University, is going to visit her when school lets out early in May.
There are, it turns out, some true advantages to having a sis who lives in Europe. After Meghan’s professional season ends in April, the girls plan to spend almost a month in Hungary, Slovenia and Italy, taking it all in and seeing friends before they return to the family home in Ponte Vedra, Florida.
Volleyball success propelled the sisters to some really cool places. But The Sisters Tour and the lofty heights of volleyball triumph wouldn’t be happening without the athletic edge the girls received by working out with Titus Sports Academy.
The girls played volleyball at Nease High School in Ponte Vedra and they played for the Jacksonville Juniors Volleyball Association in the off -season. Titus has a training facility near the high school. For years, the girls practiced with club, high school and college teams but were coached in agility, strength, quickness, mobility/flexibility and endurance at Titus Sports Academy.
“I wouldn’t have gotten here (a scholarship from Clemson) if I wasn’t this strong,” Kamryn said. “When I work out with our (Clemson) team it is very much like what I did with Titus: a little bit of everything. We learned quickness and endurance, to keep going and sustain. I know how to work in the weight room but not go too far.”
“The trainers (at Titus) incorporated a lot of explosive-style lifts,” said Meghan, who played four very successful years at the University of Tampa, “such as cleans, jump squats, that really helped me maintain a consistent vertical block jump, which was really important to improving my game at the collegiate level, as the hitters I would be competing against had a much higher contact point when attacking the ball.”
Meghan is 5-foot-11. Kamryn is 5-foot-10. Each is a setter.
They are already very tall in accomplishments.
Meghan just began playing in January with Békéscsabai Röplabda Sportegyesület (BRSE), a professional team in Bekescsaba, Hungary. While with the University of Tampa, a Division 2 power, she helped navigate them to the 2010 National Championship match. All four years at Tampa the team made the NCAA tournament. She concluded her college career with 3,408 assists. She is Tampa’s all-time leader in serve percentage (.941). She was a first-team AVCA All-American in 2009 and 2010.
Kamryn was the Times-Union/Jacksonville.com high school All First-Coast Player of the Year in 2009 and 2010. She holds the Nease High School records for assists (3,799), aces (477) and blocks (250). She also helped power Nease to its first state title in 2008.
Kamryn also played on a wildly successful USA Volleyball team, which reached the 17-and-under 2010 National Championship game in Reno, Nevada.
One of the biggest advocates of Titus Sports Academy is C.J. Sherman, the girls’ mother. Turns out she was also the Kamryn’s high school coach for some of Kamryn’s career. C.J. previously coached at Palm Beach Atlantic, the University of South Carolina-Aiken and the University of Montevallo.
C.J. took her Nease High and Jacksonville Junior Volleyball Association teams to Titus. That allowed the girls to out-jump and out-last the competition.
“Everybody in school bought into it and we could see the results,” C.J. said. “If we could get (opponents) to go three games with us, we would win. Our girls had better stamina.”
“Meghan and Kamryn came to us ready, willing and able to benefit (from our training),” said Craig Acker, Managing Partner – Titus Jacksonville.
How and why can new athletes keep working with Titus?
“Even after a couple weeks they feel stronger and better on the court.” Acker said. And the program is tailored to specific situations. For example, if a team has just returned from a grueling weekend tournament, the training for that day might be more focused on mobility/active recovery, as opposed to the regular, more rigorous work on strength and conditioning.
C.J. thinks Kamryn may be a better player than Meghan because Kamryn started with Titus when she was in eighth grade.
“Look at her pipes,” C.J. said about Kamryn’s legs. “She is very strong.”
“Kamryn is able to go into the college environment more confident,” Acker said, “because what we do is very much like what most college programs do.”
Kamryn is spending very little time looking beyond college. Still, she has a longer-term goal to also make a professional team in Europe. That’ll make a future Sisters’ Tour much easier to construct.