Grand Rapids Signs Shannon Scully and USA National Team Member Ashley Evans
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – The Grand Rapids Rise on Tuesday announced the signings of setter Ashley Evans and outside hitter Shannon Scully.
Evans is currently playing for Team USA in the Volleyball Nations League, traveling to Brazil, Turkey and South Korea to compete. The Liberty Township, Ohio, native also earned a bronze medal for Team USA at the 2022 Pan American Cup and gold at the 2019 NORCECA Pan American Cup Final Six. She has played professionally for six seasons in Germany, France, Hungary, and Spain. In 2022-23, the 6-foot-1 setter collected a bronze medal with Ladies in Black Aachen at the German Cup. She has garnered a total of four gold medals at the club level throughout her career. The 28-year-old was named the MVP and Best Setter at the 2018-19 Spanish Cup with Minis Arlut VB Logrono.
“Ashley is an extremely talented setter who has an intense desire and work ethic to go with it. The past two summers, Ashley has trained and competed with the USA National Team,” Rise head coach Cathy George said. “Her experience in Anaheim participating for the national team coupled with her years of playing professionally will help our team immensely. Ashley always wants to be the best and we are excited to add her to our roster.”
Evans played her collegiate years at Purdue University from 2013-16, where she became one of just six setters in school history with 2,000 career assists and 750 digs. As a redshirt junior in 2016, she averaged 10.88 assists per set, which ranked 38th nationally and fifth in the Big Ten. She also set a Purdue NCAA Tournament record when she recorded a 0.454 hitting percentage against Iowa State in the first round on Dec. 1, 2016. Evans became just the 15th Boilermaker in program history to record a triple double when she amassed 43 assists, 10 kills and 10 digs on Aug. 27, 2016 against No. 24 Kentucky. In 2015, Evans ranked fourth in the Big Ten and 29th in the NCAA with 11.06 assists per set.
“I am thrilled to be part of the inaugural Pro Volleyball Federation season and to compete for Cathy George in Grand Rapids. The excitement of establishing a real professional volleyball league in the U.S. grows daily, and I can’t wait to get started,” Evans said. “Knowing who has already committed to play in various PVF franchises, I can guarantee that fans across the nation and globe are in for one incredibly competitive first season.”
Scully, a Huntington Beach, Calif., native competed in her rookie pro campaign with Terville-Florange OC in France during the 2022-23 season. She was named the Best Receiver at the French Cup in 2022-23 and was also dubbed the December Athlete of the Month in the French Ligue A. During Scully’s collegiate career, she was a three-time USA Collegiate National Team Member as well as a 2021 AVCA All-American Honorable Mention and AVCA First Team Pacific South All-Region honoree. In addition to her indoor volleyball career, Scully won a national title with USC’s beach volleyball team in 2022.
“Shannon brings a great deal of experience to our team, as she played in the Pac-12, West Coast Conference, the collegiate national team and for Terville-Florange OC in France. Shannon has always been known as a player who has great skills both offensively and defensively. Her calm and confident demeanor during pressure moments has helped her team reach high levels of success. Shannon’s versatility and amazing skill set will have a major impact on our team.”
Scully played her collegiate years at USC (2021-22), Pepperdine University (2018-21) and Utah University (2017-18). As a graduate student at USC, the 6-foot-2 hitter ranked third on the roster with 78 assists and second with 24 aces. Scully became a two-time First Team All-WCC member at Pepperdine and served as captain during her final two campaigns. During her senior season, Scully ranked second on the team with 3.32 kills per set, 3.11 digs per set and 0.32 aces per set. She recorded her 1,000th career kill during her final game as a Wave in a 3-2 defeat to No. 12 Baylor in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. Scully accumulated 1,001 kills, 80 aces, 926 digs, 121 blocks and 1,146 points in her three years at Pepperdine. As a freshman at Utah, she played in all 128 sets and charted 32 kills, 28 assists, 25 aces and 295 digs, reaching the Sweet 16 and finishing in fourth place in the Pac-12.
“I am so grateful and blessed to be given the opportunity to play the sport I love while competing at the highest level. I am honored to make history in the inaugural season of the Pro Volleyball Federation,” Scully said. “Playing professionally in the United States provides an opportunity to inspire younger generations and to serve as a role model for athletes dreaming of reaching volleyball at the highest level.”
ABOUT THE GRAND RAPIDS RISE
Founded in December 2022 as the first Pro Volleyball Federation franchise and Grand Rapids’ first major-league women’s sports team, the Grand Rapids Rise will make their debut at Van Andel Arena in January 2024. Led by longtime Michigan State and Western Michigan head coach Cathy George, the Rise’s 14-player roster will play 24 games (12 home, 12 away) during their inaugural season. The team is operated by DP Fox Sports & Entertainment and owned by Dan DeVos, who is also co-owner and CEO of the American Hockey League’s Grand Rapids Griffins. Visit grrise.com.