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The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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One step away
June 8, 2024

Macy Carrabine brings leadership to A&M

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Photo by Photo by Ishika Samant

After each winning point, the Aggies celebrate on the court. 

When she’s not establishing herself as a leader on the court for the Texas A&M volleyball team, graduate student libero Macy Carrabine has another way of harnessing her competitive spirit: Mario Kart.
“I like to start off the day with a win,” Carrabine said with a laugh. “I love to compete, no matter what it is, so if I come in early, I’ll just get on there and play some Mario Kart. We won the [Nintendo Switch] through our preseason tournament, and it had just been sitting there, so I figured I might as well.”
Whether it be in volleyball or Mario Kart, Carrabine showcases her versatility, leading the team with 297 digs and 396 total attempts through 20 games. Additionally, the University of Denver transfer has found ways to contribute to the team’s success that don’t show up on a stat sheet, drawing high praise from her head coach.
“Her ability to connect and be a glue person, the way she’s been in these short three to four months — it’s one of the biggest characteristics that makes her special,” volleyball head coach Laura “Bird” Kuhn said. “Just her presence and the way she communicates on the court, I think there’s something to be said for the way that she competes.”
Carrabine’s teammates have also taken note of her leadership ability, adding she has quickly gained their trust and reliance.
“Macy’s had such a huge impact on our team, which is hard to do being a transfer and someone who’s new to the program,” senior libero Taylor Voss said. “Her confidence is contagious to everyone on the team because she just wants to be the best teammate on and off the court.”
Carrabine’s arrival in Aggieland has been a journey, beginning over 1,000 miles away in her hometown of Indianapolis. As a four-year starter at Center Grove High School, she cemented herself as the school’s all-time leader in both digs and aces while also making the Indiana All-State team in 2016.
During her illustrious high school career, Carrabine committed to the University of Denver to play in the Summit League Conference. As a three-year starter for the Pioneers, she was a pivotal part of a team that went a combined 87-21, good for an .806 winning percentage across her four seasons in Denver.
“I really wanted to build a program,” Carrabine said. “In that class, we had six girls that were really invested coming into the program, and we got it to where it is today. Being able to explore and live in a very cool city was super cool, and being able to play at a high level every single match was a lot of fun.”
Following the conclusion of her playing time at Denver, Carrabine chose to continue her education and volleyball career elsewhere. According to Carrabine, the spirit and culture of A&M set the university apart from the many other schools she was considering.
“The main reason why I chose A&M was the support and tradition that this school has,” Carrabine said. “The 12th Man is really something special; I’ve experienced that so many times this year already.”
The maroon and white is using a starting lineup composed primarily of upperclassmen in the 2021 season, meaning it’s critical for the team’s underclassmen to grow and develop to ensure the future success of the team. Carrabine’s commitment to A&M was a major pickup for the Aggies’ coaching staff, who places great value on the wisdom and experience a transfer such as Carrabine can provide, Kuhn said.
“Any player that can share experience with someone that’s in their first year of college volleyball helps,” Kuhn said. “It gives them another perspective. She’s coming from a different program where they did things a different way, and that’s one thing some of these players will never experience.”
Carrabine’s relationships with her teammates aren’t something she takes lightly. Drawing from her own experience, she said she has found ways to assist and support the team’s younger members, both on and off the court.
“I wanted to come in and be able to hang out with anyone, so I’ve gotten close with a lot of the girls,” Carrabine said. “I’ve found myself in situations where some of the freshmen come up and ask me, ‘What do I do in this situation?’ or, ‘How can I look at this situation better?’ and I’ve been able to answer that question because I’ve been there.”
Indeed, Carrabine has been a central figure on an A&M team that got off to an 11-5 start this season. Now, in the middle of Southeastern Conference play, the Aggies look to finish the season strong to earn a high seed in the conference tournament.
“I think we’re in a really good spot [to win an SEC championship],” Voss said. “We’re all hungry. It’s just about getting in the gym and getting another practice in everyday to be able to compete at our highest level.”
After four successful seasons at the University of Denver, Carrabine can testify to the strength and depth of the Pioneers’ conference. However, she was quick to note that the high competitiveness and talent of the SEC is second to none.
“SEC volleyball, there’s nothing like it,” Carrabine said. “You don’t have any games where you can just go through the motions; you need to show up every single night. There’s definitely a high level of competition in the Summit League, but [SEC volleyball] is just something way bigger.”
In her brief time with the A&M volleyball program, Carrabine says she has already seen improvement in herself not only as a player, but also as a person. When discussing the success she has found on the court, she said she credits her teammates and coaching staff.
“Coming in and not knowing a ton of the girls at first, I had to earn their respect and trust quickly, and in doing that, I gained a lot of confidence,” Carrabine said. “Being on the court a lot this year, I’ve had to be a steady leader, and Bird has trusted me to do that.”
Carrabine has quickly found a home in Aggieland as her and the rest of the maroon and white squad work toward their goal of winning a conference championship. Regardless of what route the Aggies’ season takes, Carrabine will undoubtedly be a key reason for their success.
“Just something about Texas A&M made it feel like home to me,” Carrabine said. “Right when I got on campus, it was something special.”

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