Duke Volleyball Announces Four to 2022 Signing Class

DURHAM – The Duke Volleyball Program and Head Coach Jolene Nagel announced the addition of four players to the 2022 roster as Taylor Atkinson, Kerry Keefe, Millie Muir and Sydney Tomlak will join the Blue Devils in the fall.

Nagel’s incoming class is currently number 16 in the nation by Prep Volleyball.

“We are excited to introduce our latest additions to the Duke volleyball family,” said Nagel. “This incoming ’22 class includes outstanding students, leaders in their high schools, and talented volleyball players who will all make outstanding ambassadors. We look forward to welcoming them to Duke and know they will all make great contributions.”

Fort Mill, SC | Nation Ford High School | 6-4 Winger | Carolina Juniors

Taylor Atkinson comes to Durham from Fort Mill, SC, where she attends Nation Ford High School and is a member of the Carolina Juniors volleyball club under Zoe Bell.

A three-time All-Region and two-time All-State roster, Atkinson was named Region 3-5A Player of the Year during her junior and senior campaigns and was selected to the North South All-Star Team in 2021. 4 outside hitter wrote all four high school years and was a two-time South Carolina 5A State Champion. Earlier this fall, Atkinson was listed by the AVCA as a second-team High School All-America roster. She took All-Tournament honors at the Wando tournament this fall, during a season in which the Falcons earned the 5A-Region 3 title. During her senior campaign, she amassed approximately 450 kills and more than 300 digs, while also serving as team captain and eventually being named the Nation Ford Volleyball Player of the Year. During her career, she has more than 1,000 kills to her credit and has previously been included on the AVCA All-Region team.

Outside of athletics, Atkinson is a member of the National Honor Society, the Beta Club, was a Junior Marshall (top 10 student in the youth class), and received the Olympic Award for the highest GPA in the ninth grade. In October, she was named to the AVCA Best and Brightest First Team for her academic achievements.

“Taylor is an exciting addition to our program as she is a versatile, high-ceilinged athlete. As a pin hitter with the ability to attack from the center, she offers so many options offensively, while also being a great blocker. We are proud to add another Carolina area student athlete to our program and are excited to see her continue to develop.”

Pacific Palisades, California | Marymount High School | 6-3 Right side | Sunshine Volleyball Club

Kerry Keefe comes to Durham from Pacific Palisades, California, where she attends Marymount High School. The #19 ranked recruit in the class of 2022 according to PrepVolleyball, she is a 6-3 right turning batter who also plays for the Sunshine Volleyball Club under Cari Klein.

This fall, Keefe helped Marymount to a perfect 35-0 record, a state title and a #1 national ranking. On the way to their historic finish, Marymount also won the Nike Tournament of Champions Southwest, GEICO Girls Volleyball Invitational and the prestigious Durango Fall Classic tournament, after which Keefe was named to the all-tournament team. This summer, Keefe and her Sunshine Volleyball Club team won the 17 Open Championship at the Girls Junior National Championships in Las Vegas, NV. After delivering an exceptional performance throughout the tournament, she was named to the 17 Open All-Tournament team. She was also one of 24 high school athletes from across the country selected to train with the U.S. U18 girls’ volleyball team last summer in Anaheim, CA.

Outside of athletics, Keefe is a Cum Laude nominee and recipient of the General Excellence award in her high school. She also served on the student council for two years.

Keefe comes from a very athletic family. Her twin sisters, Caitlin and Michaela, played volleyball and graduated from Stanford in 2020, while her brother, James, is currently on the Stanford basketball team. Her mother, Kristin, also played volleyball at Stanford and was a member of the 1996 Olympic team, while her father, Adam, played basketball at Stanford and in the NBA.

“We couldn’t be happier that Kerry has chosen to be a Blue Devil. Coming from a family of collegiate athletes, she comes to Durham with an understanding of the student-athlete experience and the athletic and academic demands of this role which will enable her to have a smooth transition and contribute to her success.Aside from her elite volleyball skills, she is also a mature and experienced leader and will make an immediate impact for us.Kerry is a proven winner who has achieved success in the absolute highest level in both high school and club volleyball and we are so excited that she brings that work ethic and experience to our program.”

Stanford, California | Sacred Heart Preparation | 6-1 Setters | Encore Volleyball Club

Millie Muir is from Stanford, California, where she currently attends Sacred Heart Prep. The 6-1 setter also plays for Encore Volleyball Club under Katie Goldhahn.

She is a four-time captain of the club and a three-time West Bay Athletic League (WBAL) first-team All-League roster and helped lead her high school squad to a 23-6 record this year. She was named WBAL’s co-MVP with a trip to the CIF NorCal Division I tournament. As the No. 44 ranked recruit in the 2022 class according to: Preparing volleyball, she was also named on the AVCA Phenom list and was selected for the USA U19 training team. Throughout her young career, she has earned multiple Player of the Week awards from the San Jose Mercury News, the San Mateo Daily Journal and the Palo Alto Weekly.

Outside of volleyball, she was the student council president this year after being twice elected class president and student council representative (2018-19). Muir was the founding member of the Black Student Union (2020-21) and has earned multiple awards, including the Honors Convocation Award for Computer Science, Mathematics, Science, English, Ceramics, AP Computer Science, and Social Ethics. In addition, she was the winner of the National Protein Engineering Contest, the Senior Legacy Scholarship Award and the Sean McLarry Fine Arts Award.

Like future teammate Keefe, Muir has athletic history in her blood. Her father, Bernard, is the current director of athletics at Stanford and he played basketball for Brown. Her mother, Liz, played volleyball in North Carolina, was a member of the ACC 50-year volleyball team, and coached volleyball in Auburn, Iowa, and Kansas. Her sister, Libby, played lacrosse at Stanford, while her uncle played basketball at Northwestern. Finally, her grandfather played football in Northern Illinois.

“It feels like it’s been eons since Millie committed to becoming a Blue Devil, and I’m thrilled the time has come to welcome her to campus. She has continued to improve under guidance as both a setter and a hitter of some outstanding coaches and her size, maturity and experience playing in older age divisions throughout her career will be valuable in her transition into the college game.She grew up surrounded by high performing role models in the classroom, athletics and leadership who All have positively influenced and nurtured those qualities in her as well.”

Oakland, Michigan | Stoney Creek High School | 5-11 Libero/Defensive Specialist | Legacy Volleyball Club

Sydney Tomlak joins the Blue Devil family of Oakland, Michigan, where she attends Stoney Creek High School and is a member of the Legacy Volleyball Club led by Jennifer Cottrill. She had a very successful high school career under head coach Ross Talbott in addition to her performance with Bryan Lindstrom in the club environment.

For her high school honors, Tomlak was named the top 10 finalist for the 2021 Miss Volleyball Michigan, which is awarded to the best high school volleyball player in the state based on a vote from the state head coaches. Tomlak, a four-time first-team Oakland Athletic Association (OAA) All-Conference and first-team All-Region roster, has also been named a two-time second-team All-State honoree and is a two-time high school team captain and MVP . During her high school career, she helped Stoney Creek to three district championships, one OAA league championship, and two regional finals. She was also named in the 2022 Prep Dig top 10 class in Michigan and on the Prep Dig Division I All-Michigan team.

During her senior year, she made a total of 451 kills (4.1 kills/set) to reach .305, added 346 counts (3.2 counts/set), and 559 serve receptions. For her career, she owns 1,349 kills, 1,201 digs, 182 aces, and 2,110 serve receptions.

During her time on the club volleyball scene, she helped Legacy to a bronze medal at the 2018 AAU Nationals and to a top-10 finish at the 2018 USAV Junior Championships. She was named to the Prep Volleyball Class of 2022 Watch List, the Ultra Ankle Junior Volleyball Association (JVA) watchlist and is a three-time AVCA Phenom and three-time AAU Academic All-American. Tomlak helped the West Michigan Beach Volleyball team become double champions in 2020 and qualified for the USAV open championship three times.

Outside of athletics, Tomlak is a member of the National Honor Society, on the Stoney Creek Student Council and the Athletic Leadership Council. She was named the OAA district representative of 2022 and represented her high school at rallies of other schools in the state. She has served as a Link Crew Leader guiding a group of freshmen, being a member of the UNICEF club, coaching youth at her volleyball club and volunteering at soup kitchens, Grace Center of Hope and Kensington Church.

Tomlak also comes from a big sports family as her brother, sister, mom and dad all played collegiate athletics. Her brother, Brady, played hockey at the Air Force Academy and currently plays professional hockey for the ECHL Toledo Walleyes. Her sister, Alexa, played volleyball in Alabama, while her mother, Michele, played basketball at the University of Western Ontario. Finally, her father, Mike, played hockey at the University of Western Ontario and played professional hockey for 11 seasons with the NHL Hartford Whalers, the AHL Milwaukee Admirals and in Europe.

“Sydney is an experienced and skilled player who has been a leader on every team she has played in from high school to the club. Her ball control and speed as a defender will instantly improve our serve-receiving and transitioning game. I love it that she is the perfect teammate, radiates positivity and thrives under pressure. Her team spirit and desire to help those around her be great will fit perfectly with how we love to work every day.”

For more information on Duke volleyball, follow the Blue Devils Twitter, Facebook and Instagram by searching for “https://goduke.com/news/2021/12/21/DukeVB”.

#Good week

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