Harthun Bids Farewell
Aaron Walling / Sun Star
All good things must come to an end, as senior Sam Harthun knows. This year Harthun says goodbye to the volleyball team she has played for since her freshman year. Harthun leaves the Nanooks after capturing the Nanooks’ all time kills record and the GNAC kills record. As
Sam Harthun rides off into the sunset after the season, she will go down as one of the greatest volleyball players in Nanooks’ history.
Harthun showed up to the UAF campus from Oregon City, Oregon, took over as the outside hitter for the Nanooks and took game by storm. In Sam Harthun’s first match, she led the Nanooks in kills against Findlay, garnering a double-double with 14 kills and 11 digs. After that match, Sam Harthun showed the leadership that not many freshman portray in an interview with Erin McGroarty.
“In set two we just weren’t focused enough on the little things,” Harthun said, after the match. “But after that we went back down to the locker room and figured out ‘This is what we want to do, we have to do it, we have to execute,’ and we did and things went our way after that.”
That was the start of it all, and Sam Harthun went on to have one of the greatest careers for the Nanooks. Despite playing through multiple losing seasons throughout her career, she continued to dominate the GNAC in her own way. For the Nanook volleyball players before her, which includes a list of: Heather Harrison and Mallory Larranaga (nee Bergstrom).
Harthun was awarded the Freshman of the Year Award which opened a career full of kills.
One of the things that her head coach Phil Shoemaker said about Harthun after winning the award was.
“I’m super excited for Sam,” former Nanooks Coach Shoemaker said in a press release. “Certainly we think it’s recognition that is well deserved.” “It’s an indicator of the season she had and what we think the future holds for her,” Shoemaker said. “You can think of the great ones who have come through here and her name is going to join that list really soon.”
You jump forward to 2015 where Harthun has finished with 1,513 kills which is both an Alaska Nanooks and GNAC record.
From the Sun Star and all of UAF, we say goodbye to you Sam Harthun.