Chesapeake two-sport star Davis hopes to play volleyball in college
CHESAPEAKE, Ohio — Karli Davis might be compared to the kid who wears red in a group picture where everyone else is wearing blue.
The Chesapeake High School senior isn’t defiant. She’s a volleyball star in a basketball family. The daughter of Panthers boys basketball coach Ryan Davis excels at both sports. She desires, though, to play volleyball in college and is drawing attention from several schools. Davis said she likes Cumberland (Tennessee) University and has attracted attention from Middle Tennessee, Indiana University-Southern and Shawnee State University. Wherever she goes, she plans to major in social work or speech pathology.
“I do like volleyball better,” said Davis, who recorded her 1,000th career point earlier this season. “I like basketball, but volleyball is my favorite.”
The 6-footer said she has drawn inspiration from close friend and fellow Chesapeake senior Tanner Harr, who is fighting cancer.
“When I visited Tanner in the hospital, I met the nurses and staff and it really touched me,” Karli said. “It made me want to work with people, to help them. Tanner is my best friend and he inspires me.”
Harr isn’t the only role model for Davis who said her family also provides motivation. She butts heads with her brother Karson, 11, but is closer to him than anyone and her sister Kenzli, 6, is a “mini-me who wants to be wherever I am.” Davis also credits her mom, Renee, and with helping her become who she is.
“I appreciate spending time with my dad,” she said. “He’s made me a better person and athlete. I love the way my mom carries herself. She’s such a great example for me.”
Being a coaches’ daughter can be challenging, especially when Davis hears a fan criticize her father.
“It definitely has its downside, hearing everybody’s opinions,” Karli said. “I like spending time with my dad. I like spending time with my family and hanging out with my friends.”
Coach Davis said he is proud of his girl.
“She’s a great young lady,” Davis said. “She has a great personality, very giving, very caring.I couldn’t be more proud of her and how she’s turned out how she is.”
Davis has given her parents plenty of reasons to brag, and not just on the courts. She maintains a 3.68 GPA and takes college classes at Ohio University-Southern. She also is spiritually active, attending C3 Church in South Point, Ohio.
“My faith is very important to me,” Karli said. “I got baptized at C3 last year after prom. Both my grandfathers came and baptized me.”