CORTLAND, N.Y. - This week's State University of New York Athletic Conference (SUNYAC) Q&A is with Oswego's Shauna O'Flaherty (Garrison, N.Y.). O'Flaherty was this week's PrestoSports Volleyball Offensive Athlete of the Week.
O'Flaherty, the senior outside hitter, led the Lakers to a 3-0 week, including their first win over Nazareth College in the last 20 years. She recorded a double-double to start the week against the Golden flyers with 13 kills and 11 digs. On Friday against Plattsburgh, she hit .519 (16-2-27) from the floor and followed that up with a 14-kill effort in a crucial five-set victory on the road at Potsdam on Saturday. For the week, O'Flaherty averaged 3.91 kills/set and hit .308 while adding 28 digs, five aces and a pair of blocks.
1-Do you have a hidden or special talent?
I can hold 9 volleyballs at one time. I discovered this during a practice not too long ago.
2-Do you have any pre-competition rituals?
Prior to games I always drink coffee and braid my hair a certain way. Coffee always pumps me up and when your hair looks good, you play good.
3-What's your favorite memory since competing for your institution?
My favorite memory since competing at Oswego was winning against Brockport in 5. It was a back and forth match where we had to overcome an injury from one of our starters and had lost to them earlier in the season. It showed we really wanted to win and was just a fun and intense game of volleyball.
4-If you could have one song play every time you score/get a hit/win a race what would it be?
The song I would chose to be played every time I got a kill would be "Here Comes the Boom" by Nelly. This song just overall boosts my confidence and makes me feel like a beast.
5-If you were stranded on an island, who would you want to be there with you, and why?
If I were stranded on an island, I would want my dad to be there with me. He is incredibly smart and handy so I think he would be able to build shelter and find food to help us survive.
6-What is your spirit animal?
My spirit animal is a sea otter. Ever since visiting the aquarium recently, I have grown to love sea otters because of their happy personalities, how they are so care free and easily made happy.
7-What's the best advice anyone has given you?
The best advice I received was from my sister who told me not to make long term decisions for short term reasons. This advice relates to many things in life and its easy to give up in the moment, but you have to think about the bigger picture and how one decision will effect you in the future.
8-What are some things you do to prepare for a game mentally?
Aside from listening to great pump up music, I love to watch motivational speeches or videos. My favorite video is "How Bad Do You Want It" which includes a speech by Eric Thomas. I also give myself pep talks just to remind myself to play like it's my last game.
9-Do you have a motto you live by or say to yourself on occasion?
Work hard, stay humble. This motto is important because too often success changes people for the worse and working hard but still remaining who you are is key.
10-If you could pick one person in the entire world to be a spectator at all of your games who would it be and why?
I would chose my sister Siobhan to be a spectator at all of my games. This is because she is my best friend and I am most myself around her. She also lives far away and has never seen me play so just her presence in the audience would liven my play on the court and make me happy.