Former Triangle athlete Antonia “Nia” Kearney (Class of 2018) suffered a spinal cord injury that has taken her from the Neuro ICU at UNC Hospital to the renowned Shepherd Center in Atlanta. On Thursday, May 2, Nia developed a pain in her neck that progressed throughout the day and led to her losing sensation and use of her arms and legs. Upon further testing, doctors discovered that she has suffered from a blood clot on her spinal cord, leaving her confined to a hospital bed and unable to breathe on her own. To give her the best care and best chance at recovery, Nia was moved to the Shepherd Center in Atlanta on May 22 where she will stay at least until the end of the summer.
Those who know Nia love her for her kind heart, contagious spirit, and tenacity on the court. A member of the Howard University volleyball team, Nia helped her team to the MEAC Championship and an NCAA Tournament appearance. Choosing to return home, she has been juggling two jobs and classes at Wake Tech, both of which had to be put on hold due to these recent events.
She’s attacked her situation with as much optimism and open mindedness as one can, inspiring friends, family, and doctors alike. A favorite nurse of Nia’s recently likened Nia’s ferocity in the face of such great adversity to that of the bumble bee. By all calculations and scientific measurements, bumble bees should not be able to fly since its wings are considered too small to support the weight of its body; but, bees fly anyway. As things got harder and the move from North Carolina came to be the best plan, she told Nia, “Nothing is impossible as long as you have will.”
With this newfound will, Nia has made great strides. She’s regained movement of her fingers and toes and is optimistic that regaining the ability to breathe on her own is the next step. Still, she has a long way to go. Following a nearly 3-week stay in the UNC Neuro ICU and adjusting to a demanding recovery program away from home in Atlanta, we want Nia and her family’s focus to be solely on her progress.
Please join us for our Nia Strong 4v4 Tournament on Saturday, June 15, 6-10pm, at Triangle Volleyball Club (new location at the WCC). We will have an evening full of great volleyball, food, and community. ALL ages are strongly encouraged to attend and all proceeds collected will go directly to the Kearney family. Tournament details are below and we hope parents of former vball players won’t shy away from the Adult recreational division.
Donations including items for our raffle will be graciously accepted.
Raffle Items, contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Updates on Nia’s progress are posted on Nia’s Go Fund Me page.
We will have multiple age-level and competitive divisions. Final divisions/format will be guided by the number of participating teams and the competitive level. Check out all the details below. For additional information please contact email@example.com.
DATE/TIME: Saturday, June 15, 6-10pm
LOCATION: Triangle Volleyball Club at the WCC. 121 Competition Center Drive, Morrisville, NC 27560
WHO: anyone who wants to play volleyball to support Nia. Teams can be female or Co-ed* only.
TEAM SIZE: 4-6 players, 5 recommended (1 sub)
ENTRY FEE: $25 per player. Each player will need to register independently. REGISTER HERE. REGISTRATION DEADLINE: Tuesday, June 11th.
- Middle School (5th-8th grade) Competitive & Recreational
- High School (9th-12th grade) Competitive & Recreational
- Adult (no longer in high school) Competitive & Recreational
FORMAT: the number of matches and playing format will truly depend on the number of teams participating
SCHEDULE will be released no later than Friday, June 14 but please plan on arriving at 5:45pm on Saturday for opening ceremony
SPECIAL RULES: male players are only able to attack from behind the 10' line. *There must be at least one female on the court at all times.
AWARDS/PRIZES will be given to top finishers in each division.
After two narrow qualification misses at Sunshine Volleyball Showcase (4th place) and Big South National Qualifier (3rd place) Triangle 13 Black learned of their 'at-large' qualification for USAV Girls' Junior National Championships. The Open division is the highest level of competition at USAV nationals and 13 Black is among only 24 teams nationally earning bids through the qualifier process.
The members of Triangle 13 Black are: Avery Booker, Erin Curtis, Teagan Hogan, Julianna Horta, Suna Merkler, Sydney Muffler, Belle Patrick, Sally Perez, Jordan Smart, and Asia Thigpen. The team is coached by Jason Curtis, Camden Spade '11 and Britni Johnson '14.
April 8, 2019
For the 6th time in the past seven years Triangle has qualified 17 Black for the Open division at USA Volleyball's Girls' Junior National Championships. Triangle earned it's Open qualification at The Big South National Qualifier in Atlanta held April 6-8. The bid places Triangle 17 Black in a field of 36 Open qualified teams representing the strongest teams in their age level competing in girls' junior club volleyball nationwide. The latest rankings from PrepVolleyball.com (March 28, 2019) have Triangle 17 Black ranked as the 9th best in the country.
Triangle 17 Black will compete for a national title in Indianapolis, July 2-5, 2019.
The members of Triangle 17 Black are (Top Row, L to R): Priscilla Jones (Green Hope HS), Jade Demps (Broughton HS), Kaya Merkler (Chapel Hill Hs), Alexis Engelbrecht (Green Hope HS), and Sydney Dowler (Green Hope HS) and [Bottom Row, L to R]: Alli Grant Avery (Arendell Parrot Academy), Taylor Thomason (North Raleigh Christian Academy), Destinee Dorsey (Carrboro HS), JaKya Moore (Enloe HS).
March 19, 2019:
18 Black headed to Baltimore to compete in the Northeast Qualifier seeking an Open division bid to the USAV 18s Girls Junior National Championships. With the Open division being the most competitive and full of some of the best teams in the country qualifying would be no small feat. 18 Black were one setter down heading into the event and unfortunately on day 1 their only remaining 'true' setter was taken out by a concussion. The team fought through day 2 to land in the Silver bracket on the final day of competition. With three total bids to award and three previously qualified teams in Gold, 18 Black was still in line to earn a bid. To do so would require them to defeat Paramount (a 3-set MAPL loss for 18 Black earlier this season). With one of the team's liberos and an outside hitter setting a 6-2 they took the court. The lineup had numerous players in different positions than typical - they had a middle playing 6 rotations and lost a primary passer to the role of setter. Without question the odds were stacked against 18 Black, but they jumped on court determined to give it their all. When the final whistle blew, they had battled through three sets to win against a powerful Paramount team (25-22, 22-25, 15-12). They had qualified, but this crew decided that wasn't enough. In the Silver bracket final the match up was a weary but determined band of eight against EC Power 18-Royal (ranked 68th nationally vs. 73rd for Triangle). After dropping the first set, Triangle battled back to get the second and third sets (21-25, 25-22, 15-12) and finish in fifth place overall.
Triangle 18 Black will play for a national championship in Dallas in late April.
The members of 18 Black are [Top Row, L to R]: Kayla Spells (NC School of Science & Math), Lexi Cole (Jack Britt HS), Cera Powell (Northwood HS), Logan Pope (East Chapel Hill HS), Brooke Hanshumaker (Apex HS) and Coach Jim Freeman and [Bottom Row, L to R]: Coach Keisha Demps, Jordan Gower (Leesville Road HS), Logan Mosley (Cary Christian School), and Brittany Wood (Broughton HS). Not shown: Skylar Buckley (North Raleigh Christian Academy)
Triangle athlete, Madelyn "MadDog" Wilson (Triangle 17 White) has experienced a relapse of Hodgkin's Lymphoma. Our practice tee is a tribute to the battle she fought last season against cancer and our way to stand with her as she continues to battles back to her healthy self. This relapse will force Mad to undergo another aggressive and very difficult cancer treatment. She will be unable to finish her season and will likely spend most of her summer in the hospital as her body heals itself after a bone marrow transplant.
If you don't know Mad, trust me, she is a WARRIOR!!! After her initial diagnosis and facing a difficult treatment Madelyn thought of others rather than herself and ran a fundraiser for Duke Hospital's Children Oncology Team. Imagine a 15-year newly diagnosed with cancer, isolated and forced to miss school and many other activities, raising over $22,000 to help others. Madelyn raised this money directly for Duke Children's Hospital to help others in her
situation have the best care possible. Like I said, she IS a warrior!
We want to rally people to be by her side as wages battle once again. Unfortunately her bone marrow transplant will keep her isolated for a considerable amount of time as her immune system will be inoperable.
We can all be there with her in spirit and give her an exciting WISH to look forward to by supporting 4v4 MADness - A Make-A-Wish® benefit for Madelyn Wilson. To follow Mad's journey on Caring Bridge visit https://www.caringbridge.org/visit/madlove4mad.
We had a phenomenal time at 4v4 MADness. Thank you to all our participants, donors, volunteers and fans. We missed Mad but she was there in spirit. It's not too late to donate if you missed your chance this past Saturday. See below.
DONATE - can't play? You are welcomed and encouraged to donate to support Mad. We are accepting donations of items to raffle off and/or use for prizes and we will gladly accept cash donations as well. All cash donors ($25 or more) will have a Make-A-Wish® star with their name on it displayed at our facility. Donor levels...
- Red = $25
- Blue = $50
- Silver = $100-$249
- Gold > $250+
- You are free to give any amount as well
To DONATE click HERE
SHARE - please share on social media and with everyone you know. Official event hashtags:
100% of all proceeds will go to Make-A-Wish® of North Carolina for Madelyn's wish
Thank you for your support, kind thoughts and prayers for Madelyn. - Sherry
January 22, 2019:
The 4th annual City of Oaks Challenge saw 235 teams and 8000 players, coaches, and spectators enjoy a weekend of exciting junior club volleyball in the vibrant Raleigh downtown area.
Participating teams were from Virgina, North Carolina and South Carolina with many of the top teams on the eastern seaboard among the participants.
Over 20 college recruiters were present at the event (DII and below*)
Congratulations to all our top finishing teams and thanks to all who participated. See you next year on January 18-20, 2020.
12 Girls division
- Champion - Academy 12 Diamond
- Finalist - CJV 12 Paige
13 Girls division
- Champion - Academy 13 Diamond
- Finalist - Triangle 13 Black
- Silver Bracket Winner - CJV 13 Duane
14 Girls division
- Champion - Triangle 14 Black
- Finalist - Academy 14 Diamond
- Silver Bracket Winner - ECVC Hurricanes 14-1
- Bronze Bracket Winner - Triangle 14 White
- Flight 1 Bracket Winner - Virginia Elite 14's
15 Girls division
- Champion - Academy 15 Diamond
- Finalist - CJV 15 Zoe
- Silver Bracket Winner - Virginia Elite 15's
- Bronze Bracket Winner - Stanly Elite 15
- Flight 1 Bracket Winner - SC Midlands 15 National
16 Girls division
- Champion - ECVC Hurricanes 16-1
- Finalist - Triangle 16 Black
- Silver Bracket Winner - Carolina Edge 16
- Bronze Bracket Winner - CJV 16 Rachel
- Flight 1 Bracket Winner - Academy 16 Crystal
17/18s Girls division
- Champion - Triangle 18 Black
- Finalist - Triangle 17 Black
- Silver Bracket Winner - Triangle 18 Blue
- Bronze Bracket Winner - Academy 18 Diamond
- Flight 1 Bracket Winner - Twin City TCVA 17 Royal
12U Winter Classic division
- Champion - Triangle 12 Silver
- Finalist - Triangle 11 Black
14U Boys division
- Champion - Twin City TCVA 14 Bros
- Finalist - Lake Norman 14 Dave
16U Boys division
- Champion - Coastal Hampton 16 Boys
18U Boys division
- Champion - Coastal Hampton 18 Boys
- Finalist - Triangle 18U Boys
*new NCAA recruiting rules do not allow Division I recruiters off campus on this weekend
Riley Buckley '22, Setter/OH (North Raleigh Christian Academy) was named PrepVolleyball.com's National HS Freshman of the Year. Buckley was introduced to the game at a very young age and has trained both indoors and beach throughout her career. Buckley began her club career with Triangle in 2014 and currently plays on Triangle 16 Black. Buckley was instrumental in the success of the NRCA Knights this past fall when they won their fourth straight independent schools state championship. For the complete story on Buckley's exceptional freshman season at NRCA visit PrepVolleyball.com (subscription required)
There was an exceptional turnout of Triangle alums at the annual holiday alumni match. Over 30 alums representing the 2006 through the 2018 class were present. Coaches Robin Bugg and Jim Freeman 'coached' the star studded teams which put on quite a display of talent.
The alumni made their lasting mark on Triangle's new facility by signing the ball bins that made the trip from the Globe Center facility.
Triangle's alumni match takes place each year over the holidays. If you are a Triangle alum and would like to update your contact information please contact CJ Hunter, firstname.lastname@example.org