Surrounded by about 30 family and friends, Ashland High School senior Myla Norvell signed a national letter of intent to attend Western Oregon University on a partial volleyball scholarship Thursday in the Mountain Avenue Gym trophy room.

A two-time all-conference selection, Norvell said she will play defensive specialist and libero for the Western Oregon Wolves, who compete at the NCAA Division II level in the Great Northwest Athletic Conference.

“It feels so good,” she said of the decision. “This whole process has been so stressful and has been ongoing since my freshman year, so now that it’s finally over and I can put it all away and just focus on what’s next, it’s just the best feeling in the world.”

Norvell had 202 digs, 173 kills and 31 aces as a senior outside hitter for Ashland to earn second-team all star honors in the Midwestern League. She considered Linfield College, Stanislaus State University, Whitman College and Southern Oregon University before settling on WOU. The decision, she said, came down to several factors: she appreciated the relatively small size of the school, WOU happens to have both her majors (business and psychology) and she loved the volleyball team’s family atmosphere, which Norvell witnessed during her official visit in January.

“I just really enjoyed the coaches and the players,” she said. “They have a really good work ethic there and they all have this sense of family. They’re always together, they do as many team bonding activities as they can and they just all get along really well.”

The Wolves finished 10-17 last season, including 7-13 in the GNAC, under first-year head coach Tommy Gott.

Norvell said she’s not sure whether or not she’ll see any action as a freshman, but wants to contribute any way she can.

“We haven’t really talked much about (playing time) because it was (Gott’s) first year, so he’s still feeling out his players and getting the rest of my (recruiting) class signed,” Norvell said. “But when I was up there, they talked to me about …coming into this season with a leadership role instead of being a quiet freshman. So hopefully, I’ll make an impact as soon as I possibly can.”

Prep Baseball

Shea Scott had four hits and Peyton Fuller was dominant on the mound as the Ashland Grizzlies steamrolled North Eugene 10-0 in a Midwestern League game Thursday at Swede Johnson Stadium.

Scott went 4-for-4 with three RBIs, including a two-run single in the sixth to help the Grizzlies (6-4, 3-4 MWL) break open what had been a close game. Also for Ashland, Matt O’Donnel went 3-for-4 with a double and two runs scored and Nick Sanderson had two hits.

Fuller held the Highlanders (1-11, 0-7) scoreless on two hits in 5 1/3 innings to pick up the victory. He struck out nine and walked two.

Ashland led 2-0 through five innings before scoring four runs in both the sixth and seventh to pull away.

The Grizzlies will host a doubleheader against the Highlanders Saturday.

Ashland;001 014 4—10 14 1

North Eugene;000 000 0—0 1 3

Fuller, Sanderson (6), Carroll (7) and N. McLennan; Ahlstrom, Nation (6), Rubin (7), Arbogast (7) and Hertz. 2B — A: O’Donnel.

Joe Zavala is a reporter for the Ashland Daily Tidings. Reach him at 541-821-0829 or Follow him on Twitter at @Joe_Zavala99.