Iowa volleyball’s Joslyn Boyer ready to take on bigger role her sophomore season

Boyer was a breakout player for the Hawkeyes as a freshman last season.


Megan Nagorzanski

Iowa defensive specialist Joslyn Boyer bumps the ball during a volleyball match between Iowa and Michigan State at Carver Hawkeye Arena on Sunday, October 12, 2019. The Hawkeyes were defeated after 5 sets.

Chloe Peterson, Sports Reporter

“Reserved” was Iowa volleyball head coach Vicki Brown’s first impression of Joslyn Boyer when she joined the team as a freshman last season.

Boyer hails from Downers Grove, Illinois, and in her first year as a Hawkeye she led the team’s freshmen in playing time — appearing in 28 matches with three starts. She also tallied 161 digs throughout the season and 15 service aces, tying for third on the team.

Throughout the season, as Boyer spent more time on the court, she also started to come out of her shell.

“Gradually, as she started having success on the court and earning that respect from the team, I really started to see her open up,” Brown said. “It was a great first year for her.”

In February, Boyer, along with teammates Courtney Buzzerio and Maddie Slagle, tried out for the U.S. Women’s Collegiate National Team.

“It was a great opportunity to play with some of the really good college athletes,” Boyer said. “I really had no expectations of making any team. I went there with the attitude to go have fun and play really good volleyball.”

And play really good volleyball was what she did.

Boyer was selected for the team, making her the first Hawkeye in program history to make a USA Volleyball collegiate squad.

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“Getting that email, especially as a freshman, was really exciting,” Boyer said.  “It just makes me more excited for the next couple years.”

The collegiate team was supposed to train side-by-side with the U.S. Women’s National Team in June as they prepared for the Olympics in Tokyo, but the COVID-19 pandemic canceled those plans. Although she is disappointed that she could not work out with the women’s national volleyball team this summer, Boyer is planning on trying out again next year.

For now, Boyer is excited to get back to training with her team. She said she misses the competitiveness among her teammates in practice, and even the busy schedule.

The report date for volleyball players isn’t until early August, but Boyer and some of her teammates are already on campus for voluntary workouts, doing open gyms and lifts nearly every day.

With a year of collegiate volleyball experience under her belt, Boyer is ready to take on a bigger role within the program. Even just knowing how a Big Ten season runs will help her with that, along with the year she has spent building chemistry with her teammates. Boyer is slated to be a starter on the back court for Iowa, along with senior libero Halle Johnston.

Brown also sees a bigger role for Boyer as she progresses through the program. Even with the uncertainty of the season due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Brown knows that Boyer can balance everything that is thrown at her.

“She does have the makings of a good leader,” Brown said. “It’s about how she can balance that and grow the relationship with her team while also developing her game.”

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