Now Camdyn Hinton has something big to brag about to her older sister — being part of an Amateur Athletic Union national championship volleyball team of her own.
Camdyn, a Glen Rose High School student who will be a sophomore this fall, was a member of TAV 15 Blue, which on Sunday won the Aspire National Championships in Orlando, Florida.
There were 103 teams in the Aspire Division, competing last Friday through Monday. Matches on the first three days were played in the Orlando Convention Center, and Monday’s title game was held at the ESPN Wide World of Sports.
Camdyn Hinton’s older sister, 2019 GRHS graduate Libby Hinton, was a member of AAU national championship volleyball teams in each of the past two years.
Libby Hinton captured her second straight national title in May of this year, when she helped lead her own Carrollton-based team, TAV 18, to the victory in Dallas. Playing for the GRHS Lady Tigers under head coach Sandy Langford, Libby earned all-state and academic all-state honors, and finished her high school career as the Lady Tigers’ all-time leader in blocked shots (120).
“I was really excited because it was something I really wanted to do because my sister has two national championships,” Camdyn said Tuesday of securing the national crown.
She mentioned that, before the tournament, her older sister reminded her of the two national championship medals she had brought home to the Hinton residence.
Of course, it’s not as if that was the first time in history that an older sister has ever given a good-natured motivational poke to a sibling.
“I am a very competitive person,” said Camdyn, a 5-7 libero. “It’s just fun to play. It gets me away from real-world distractions.”
Not only did Camdyn return home with a gold medal for being on the championship team, she also earned a plaque for her all-tournament status.
Libby, a 6-foot tall middle blocker, was a two-time all-tournament team selection in AAU play. She signed a letter-of-intent to play on scholarship starting this fall at Harding University, as did all-state GRHS teammate Logan Smith.
TAV 15 Blue, based in Carrollton, entered the tournament ranked No. 1 in its age division. The team won all 12 of its matches, and lost only two of 26 sets played.
Camdyn Hinton earned a spot on the all-tournament team. One of her teammates, Sydney Breon of Highland Park High School, was selected as the tournament’s Most Valuable Player.
TAV 15 Blue defeated three teams from Minnesota, three from Michigan, two from Illinois, two from Florida, one from Tennessee and one from Hawaii.
In the championship match, TAV 15 Blue posted a 25-13, 23-25, 15-13 victory over a team from Florida.
TAV 15 Blue this year had a few players Camdyn was already familiar with, but it was a bit of a challenge to mesh together at a high level. That was the job of head coach Larry Smith of Advantage Sports Complex in Carrollton, where the large national championship team trophy will be displayed.
“So I didn’t know what to expect. It wasn’t that hard, because a lot of us knew each other,” said Camdyn, who turned 15 last month. “At first when we won, I was surprised and excited.
“I was very nervous and stressed. When we received the trophy, it didn’t seem real. It seemed like a dream.”
Camdyn said she was on the junior varsity track and field team last season in school, as a 400-meter runner and on a mile relay team. But her love for volleyball may push out other varsity sports as she gets older.
“I mostly will stick with volleyball,” she said. “I may run track.”