Star-Bulletin file photo
Cecelia Goods played in the shadow
of an All-American for two years.
Cecelia Goods is finally readyBy Cindy Luis
to take her turn in the
WHERE does one hide a 6-foot-1 middle blocker? Obviously, it would take a very large shadow -- a four-time All-American shadow -- to keep one from noticing Cecelia Goods.
For the past two volleyball seasons, Goods has had her toes at the edge of the spotlight that perpetually shone on Angelica Ljungquist. With the 1996 National Player of the Year now in Brazil, it's time for Goods to make her mark on the University of Hawaii team.
Goods knows she is more visible this year.
She is a senior. She is a co-captain.
She is ready.
"Truthfully, until this year, I didn't think I was very good," said Goods, who'll start against North Carolina in tonight's second match of the Hawaiian Airlines Classic at the Special Events Arena. "But I've worked very hard and I'm feeling more confident about myself.
"I know I'm not Angelica. Nobody is. You can't compare people. You can't compare teams. Last year's team had its own style. This year's team has its own, too."
It has been a hard act to follow. The Wahine went 66-4 the past two seasons, finishing No. 2 at December's national championship.
Hawaii is currently 3-0. Surprising to some. Not to Goods, who was part of five state championship teams (three in basketball, two in volleyball) while at Kamehameha.
She has made a private vow that Hawaii will not falter during her watch. Her goal in her last season is simple: a championship season.
The soft-spoken Goods prefers to lead by example: she's first on the team in blocks, second in assists, fourth in digs. Coach Dave Shoji knows he needs to get the ball to her more; Goods, a career .316 hitter, is fifth on the team in kills.
"Cia needs to give us more offense but we need to give her a way to give us that," said Shoji. "We're not giving her an opportunity within the offense to get what we need from her.
"Cia has made such a huge transformation. She's worked real hard and, if you had seen her when she came into the gym four years ago, I don't think you'd recognize her as the same person. She ranks right up there in development with people like Suzanne Eagye, Diana Jesse, Joselyn Robins. There's been a steady progression of a good athlete who has become a real good volleyball player."
Her teammates love her for the calmness and positive support she brings to the court.
"She's so helpful to the younger players," said sophomore middle Kapu Elkington. "I let her go ahead of me (in drills) so I can watch how she does things.
"I played with her one year at Kamehameha and she's improved so much. Whenever we start to get down on ourselves, she's always there to bring us back up. She makes such a positive impact."
"Cia is a real dedicated and devoted player," said sophomore middle Jenny Roberts. "She keeps pushing me to keep going and not give up when I get frustrated. She's also a Christian and helps remind me who the strength comes from."
Goods credits the change in her mental attitude to becoming more religious. She has become involved with an athletes' Bible study group and found focus.
"I was just not happy with the way my life was going," she said. "I was bitter about life, but that part has gone away. I have found direction through the Lord."
There are many paths Goods can follow after this season. She graduates in December with a sociology degree and is hoping to play for the national team.
Goods also has done some modeling, once being offered a photo shoot with an agency in New York. She decided that the court would be her runway for now.
"Basketball was always my favorite sport and I thought I'd play that here, too," she said. "Being a two-sport athlete would have been very hard. But until three years ago, basketball was my favorite sport. Volleyball is now."
"Cia is just one of those athletes born to play volleyball," Shoji said.
No more shadows for Goods. It's her spotlight now.
Hawaiian Airlines ClassicFriday: UCLA (0-0) vs. Houston (2-1), 5:30 p.m.; North Carolina (4-0) vs. Hawaii (3-0), 7:30 p.m.
Saturday: Houston vs. Hawaii, 3 p.m.; North Carolina vs. UCLA, 5:30 p.m.
Sunday: North Carolina vs. Houston, 2 p.m.; UCLA vs. Hawaii, 4 p.m.
Where: Special Events Arena.
Broadcasts: All Hawaii matches live, KFVE TV (Channel 5) and KCCN-1420AM).
Tickets: Upper level--Adults, $7; seniors, $6; students, $4. Lower level--$9, student section, game day only.
1997 UH Wahine Volleyball Schedule