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Kayser signed her national letter of intent Wednesday in a celebration at the high school

PMG PHOTO: DEREK WILEY - Ruby Kayser, surrouned by her family and coaches, signed a national letter of intent to play volleyball at Colorado State on Wednesday.

Ruby Kayser has not decided what she will major in at Colorado State University.

But Canby volleyball coach T.J. Schlatter has a suggestion.

"She'll be a great coach someday because she's got the IQ of the game and then just the leadership qualities to be in charge of people," Schlatter said. "She's so smart at the game. Her volleyball IQ is so high. She ran our team. That's special and not all kids that are at that (skill) level can do that well and with grace."

After verbally committing to play volleyball at Colorado State in June, Kayser signed her national letter of intent Wednesday in a celebration at Canby High School.

"When I committed it didn't really feel real because it was kind of far in the future," Kayser said. "I'm kind of emotional because I've played my last (high school) volleyball game. I'm super, super excited, but it's definitely becoming more real as the year goes on."

Kayser has played volleyball since the fourth grade.

Schlatter coached her as a high school freshman at Oregon Juniors Volleyball Academy.

"She (Kayser) came in and got beat out at libero," Schlatter recalled. "She got an opportunity at a tournament because this girl was gone and she just took it and ran with it and never let it go. She had to fight for it."

While Kayser has played libero on her club teams, she began setting for Canby her sophomore year.

Schlatter called the decision a "no brainer."

"We found a spot where she can use all of her skills in a way that was phenomenal for us," Schlatter said. "I knew that she had good hands. Your setter is like the quarterback of your team, the general, the person in charge. You want somebody with that kind of leadership and IQ of the game. You touch every single ball and run balls down and no one else can run those balls down like her. She flies all over."

Kayser, a First Team All-Three Rivers League setter for three straight years, led the Cougars to their best state finish in the program's history this fall.

Kayser finished her senior season with 918 assists, 59 aces and 59 kills as Canby placed third at the Class 6A volleyball tournament.

PMG PHOTO: DEREK WILEY - Ruby Kayser sets a ball for the Cougars during her senior season at Canby High School.

"I'm so sad that we're going to lose her because she's the heart of this team," Schlatter said.

Kayser chose to sign with Colorado State because of the Rams' "volleyball culture."

Last fall, Colorado State won its 15th Mountain West Conference championship and qualified for its 24th straight NCAA tournament.

The Rams entered this weekend 15-0 in conference play, 25-1 overall and ranked No. 12 in the country.

Associate head coach Emily Kohan came to Canby's volleyball tournament in mid September for a home visit with Kayser, even though she had already committed.

"They're really about creating connections on the team and making you feel like you're family," Kayser said.

Kayser traveled to Fort Collins this weekend to see Colorado State play Boise State.

"I'm just really proud of her because I know how hard she's worked," Schlatter said.

Derek Wiley
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