Wednesday, May 18, 2022

The story of how a Wisconsin volleyball player doggedly pursued a scholarship with the Badgers

Liz Gregorsky


DENNIS PUNZEL for the state magazine

Liz Gregorsky was something between nervous and fatalistic as she headed to the University of Wisconsin volleyball office for a pre-season meeting with coach Kelly Sheffield and aides Brittany Dildine and Gary White.

Gregorsky feared the worst after two seasons in which she not only rarely played, but often could not even train.

“I am very nervous about these meetings,” she said. “Imposter syndrome sets in, as if I’m being kicked out of the team, goodbye, I really enjoyed playing with you.”

She remained tense even as Sheffield showered her with compliments.

“I sit there and wait for the but,” she said. “I’m sitting on the edge of my seat, like, my God, he’s going to tell me to leave. Then he said, “This is why we are assigning you a scholarship this year.” I get emotional just thinking about it because it was one of the best moments in my life. “

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For Gregorsky, it was that triumphant moment in her classic story of a loser.

“I didn’t plan on coming to Wisconsin,” she said. “I was told that I would never get a scholarship here. I was beside myself that my efforts had led to something tangible. It’s not about the money. This is a confirmation that this team wants me and needs me, and I am as much a part of this team as everyone else. This is just a test.

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