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Superintendent Listening Post

Jadyn Lester standout volleyball player signs with Mankato State

Photo courtesy of Post Bulletin

Mayo Girls Volleyball finished 18-8 in the fall, and captain Jadyn Lester had a huge impact on the girls’ amazing season. Without a doubt, she is one of the most talented volleyball players in Minnesota and has earned the title of All-Area Player of the Year for 2023. 

Lester will be pursuing her volleyball career at Minnesota State University, Mankato this upcoming fall. Feeling optimistic about her choice, Lester explained that, “I visited Minnesota State very early in my recruiting process, and it has always been one of my top choices. They have… a positive and hardworking environment that I believe I will learn and grow in. They also play in one of the toughest conferences in the country.” 

During a game against Winona, Jadyn Lester serves a high ball over the net. Photo Courtesy Don Paulson

Many believe that college sports are harder than those in high school, and the competition is more challenging, but Lester is ready for that: “The next level is going to be a big jump, but it is a jump that I am ready for. The competition is going to be faster and stronger, but I am ready to share those experiences with people who love the sport just as much as I do.” 

In a cross town rivalry game against Century, Jadyn Lester sets a pass to her teammate. Photo Courtesy Addison Short

On the court, her best skills are setting and providing leadership for her teammates. Lester earned All Conference for two positions, outside and setter. “I believe I am best at setting up a successful offense,” Lester said. Not only does she play volleyball in the fall for Mayo, but she also plays for the travel team, Northern Lights, which includes the best athletes in the area. 

On the psychological side of the game, Lester believes that her “gift and passion for the game sets [her] apart from others. [She is] highly competitive in all things,” and like all good athletes, she admits, “I don’t like to lose.” Lester has been a starter on the Volleyball team for many years and all of the younger players look up to her as a role model. 

Mayo Volleyball celebrates after a point against Northfield.  Photo Courtesy Addison Short

Regarding the tactical aspect of the game, Lester sets herself apart from other players by growing her offensive strategy so that her whole team can grow and not just her. Lester has improved immensely over the years, especially on the IQ side of the offensive strategy that the outside position has to do. “As a setter I had to learn how to strategize my offense at a very early age. Doing so, I gave my hitters the best opportunity to score. Not all players focus on the IQ of the game, but… it took my game to the next level,” Lester explained. 

Jadyn Lester is one of the best players to come out of Southern Minnesota for volleyball and is looking to have a great future at Mankato State this upcoming fall.

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