Former Etowah volleyball standout Savannah Bray will miss her upcoming high school graduation ceremony due to her commitments to the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, where she will continue her career.

Latresse Bray, Savannah’s mother, said that Savannah reported Monday morning for her mandatory two weeks of basic training at West Point, which has been condensed down from four weeks because of the novel coronavirus pandemic. The program will include vigorous training, learning exercises, and events for the cadets to take part in. Once this program has been completed, Savannah will then report for volleyball training with the Black Knights coaching staff and team. Savannah’s busy schedule has made it so that she will not be able to attend Etowah High School’s graduation on July 25.

“I hate that she’s going to miss Etowah’s ... graduation ceremony, and I know she does too because every student wants to have the experience of walking across the stage for their high school graduation,” Latresse said. “I know there are other students who won’t be able to attend the ceremonies either who have gone off to college like Savannah. It’s just unfortunate.”

While the graduation ceremony news is disheartening for the Bray family, Latresse said that Savannah is excited to start both her academic and volleyball career at West Point. Savannah earned a full scholarship to play volleyball at West Point, thanks to her hard work and dedication to both volleyball and academics throughout her high school career, Latresse Bray said.

Savannah received many awards for her record breaking senior season, including many player of the year awards, all-region and all-county, and many more. She also set a new state record for kills in a career, with 2,304 kills and a team-record 2,314 digs. Her jersey is now retired and hangs on the wall in the gym at Etowah as well, her mother said.

Latresse Bray said that Savannah was determined throughout high school to not only do well in volleyball, but academics as well due to her desire to attend West Point.

“Savannah worked very hard to maintain her high school GPA average, ultimately graduating with honors,” Latresse said. “Academics was important to her because in order to get into West Point, the student must have high academics. She has been dedicated for many years now to not only become a great volleyball player, but to also maintain her high GPA, and that mindset will stay the same at West Point.”

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Ethan is a reporter covering the cities of Holly Springs & Canton. He also covers city governments and lifestyle. He is a graduate of Kennesaw State University.

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