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Williams of HHS signs to play volleyball at Fairmont

Apr. 26, 2013 @ 12:00 AM

HUNTINGTON -- It was one of the more emotional moments of signing season when Huntington High senior Alexis Williams signed a national letter of intent to play volleyball for Fairmont State University.

Both Williams and her mother broke down in tears during the signing ceremony in the high school library Wednesday afternoon.

"I want to thank God for giving me the talent to sign today, and I want to thank my mom and my dad and my brother," Williams said. "I want to thank them for getting me where I needed to be, helping me keep my grades up and yelling at me when I didn't want to get yelled at."

It was at that point that Williams got choked up, talking about how difficult it will be to leave her family, friends and teammates for college.

She mentioned Dominique Gibson, who was in attendance, a teammate on Huntington High's basketball team that Williams said she has known "since we were in diapers."

She also mentioned volleyball teammate Jackie Sites, who last week signed to play for Marshall.

"Since day one, we've been teammates," Sites said.

"It's been a long road and she finally made it. I think she'll do really well when she goes to Fairmont," said mother Annie Williams. "It's going to be hard, I'll miss my baby. But she'll be fine. She's not that far away."

Annie Williams said she knows God will be watching over Alexis, and that she hopes her daughter is a student first and an athlete second.

It was father Robin Williams who brought a moment of levity to the ceremony, saying everyone had already said everything he was going to say.

"I'm always last," he said with a laugh. "But I'm proud of Alexis with the way she took control of her life, got her grades right and played volleyball really hard. Her friends are great. They've been with her through thick and thin. I just want to thank everyone for supporting her."

Williams was an all-state second team selection in volleyball in 2012.