Eva-Lotta Raat to Join Marquette in 2012
April 16, 2012
MILWAUKEE – Estonian-import Eva-Lotta Raat (pronounced: AY-va LOW-tah Raht) has signed a National Letter of Intent with Marquette University and will join the women’s volleyball program in the fall of 2012. The native of Parnumaa, Estonia will have four years of collegiate eligibility remaining with the Golden Eagles.
“I was fortunate to see Eva train last year when I was recruiting in Europe,” Marquette head coach Bond Shymansky said. “At that time she had potential, but didn’t have a complete game yet. When I saw her play again this season, she had become longer, stronger, smarter and better. She is now a smooth and rangy hitter with power and directional control, as well as good ball control skills in the back row, which is rare for a player of her height. Eva will certainly provide us with a new look in our lineup as we look to replace two impact outside hitters from last year.”
The 6-foot-1 Raat will compete for the starting role at outside hitter vacated by former All-American Ashley Beyer. Raat, who attends Audentese Spordigumnaasium in Tallinn, Estonia, can play any net position but has predominantly played right-side hitter previously in her career.
“She has had the advantage of playing at a high level for several years now, and playing against very experienced women. She will take on the speed and power of the collegiate game with ease,” Shymansky said.
She spent the last six years playing club volleyball for Parnu Vorkpalliklubi, which she recently helped to the Baltic League Championship, and projects as a six-rotation player.
Raat, who chose the Golden Eagles over Hawai’i and the College of Charleston, will be the first foreign citizen to compete for the MU since Jenn Brown (Brampton, Ontario; 2003-08) and Kimberly Todd (Oshawa, Ontario; 2004-08) graduated in 2008. She is the first European-trained volleyball player to compete for Marquette.
“It was very fun getting to know Eva as a person during the recruiting process and I know that her teammates are intrigued by her cultural and playing experiences, growing up in Estonia. She is as excited about the experience and opportunity at Marquette as we are about her,” Shymansky said.
Raat joins a Golden Eagles squad that made its first appearance in the NCAA Championship in 2011 after a program-best 24-11 mark, including a record of 12-2 in BIG EAST Conference play.
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