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Sharp Earns Full Ride Volleyball Scholarship
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Completing two years at Delta College, former Lady Cougar volleyball standout Cassandra "Cassie" Sharp will continue her college career on the East Coast.

Sharp is headed to Fordham University in New York, where she has been granted a full scholarship and will play volleyball for the Division I school. She will be going as a junior, having completed her first two years at Delta in Stockton.

"It's pretty exciting," Sharp admitted. "I never really expected it but it was really what I was working for, it's obviously a dream come true."

Sharp, 19, graduated from Escalon High in 2002 and credits both her varsity coach at EHS and her college coach at Delta for making her a better player.

"Rusty Fachner (EHS coach) saw something in me when I came in as a freshman," Sharp explained. "He pushed me and encouraged me to play in Club Volleyball, that's where recruiters start looking at you."

The outside hitter continued improving her game at the collegiate level, under the guidance of Delta coach Mary Ann Paz.

"She's one of the best coaches around," Sharp said, noting that Delta was also active in bringing recruiters in to watch the Mustangs in action.

"Delta has such a tradition of excellence and I could see myself improving," Sharp said.

During her freshman year at Delta, Sharp and her teammates finished second in the state, hosting the tournament at Delta. Sharp was the only returning starter for the team in her recently completed sophomore year and took on more of a leadership role. The team traveled to Irvine Valley for the state tournament to close out the season this year and finished third. While there, however, Sharp was able to take part in a "sophomore showcase" that gave recruiters another look at her.

She fielded offers from UC Riverside and Columbia University, as well as Fordham.

She selected Fordham because they offered the full ride scholarship and getting her education paid for, first and foremost, was the goal for the premed student.

"I'm a biological science major with a minor in psychology so I'm premed, I've known my whole life that's what I wanted to do," said Sharp.

Classes will begin Sept. 1 at the campus in New York City, but Sharp is already beginning her volleyball career there, kicking off this week with "double days" of practices and conditioning. The Division I Fordham University Rams play in the Atlantic 10 Conference.

Family and friends gathered for a celebratory going-away party for Sharp over the weekend. Among those attending were her parents, Craig and Shelley Sharp of Escalon and grandparents, Jerry and Valarie Schilber of Escalon.

Sharp said she can't wait for the next chapter of her life to unfold.

"It was so breathtaking to me, the school, the campus," she said. "The academics are outstanding and their athletics are outstanding."