The Student News Site of Alexandria City High School


The Student News Site of Alexandria City High School


The Student News Site of Alexandria City High School


Nikolai Hales Commits to BYU

ACHS boys volleyball start senior Nikolai Hales has committed to BYU. / Photo courtesy of Nikolai Hales

Nikolai Hales is a senior who has devoted the last four years of his life to playing volleyball, and it has paid off; this past summer he committed to play at Brigham Young University.

Hales started his journey in sports playing soccer when he was in grade 9, but a slide tackle from behind during freshman tryouts tore his ACL. This caused him to forgo soccer and try out volleyball.  

“From that time forward I started playing volleyball and that became my passion,” he said.

Since that moment, Hales has fallen in love with the sport. He has achieved many notable achievements as a high schooler, including having offers from seven different schools and playing for St. James 18s team—a top ten high school volleyball club in the nation. But with all these accomplishments, Hales’ favorite was the fact that he could touch nearly twelve feet in the air. 

“I can touch 11’10” which is better than some of the guys that are on the United States national team,” he said.

In his four years of volleyball, Hales has suffered setbacks that he had to work through. 

“I’ve had a lot of injuries, mostly injuries related to repetitive use. So I’ve had shin splints, back pains, knee pains. Nothing too serious but the type of things you need to take care of so they don’t get out of hand,” Hales said. 

Another thing Hales is working on is maintaining control of his nerves as well as he controls the court.

“That’s actually been one of the hardest things for me as an athlete. Beginning of last season I couldn’t handle pressure well. As I played, experience helped me get over that. So getting time on court and getting experience has made me less anxious on court,” said Hales. 

Even with all those struggles, Hales still managed to commit to BYU. 

“It was the best fit for me,” said Hales when asked about why he chose BYU. “For me it came down to volleyball and academics and being a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.”

Hales views BYU as the best school to help him hone his skills. 

“They have a historically very good volleyball program so I think being surrounded by players who are just very good players. I am going to learn a lot from them,” he said. 

Hales is optimistic on what this new opportunity can bring.. 

“I’m looking forward to just like a fresh start, meeting new kids, making friends with teammates and playing in front of a crowd,” he said. “I just love the sport, I’m passionate about it and I mean it’s been the road to so many other opportunities. I am going to school for free now and I am going to meet a lot of people. So [I’m grateful for] my passion for the sport and the opportunities it brought me” said Hales.

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