Sept. 16, 2010
Arizona Athletic Media Relations
As a young girl, outside hitter Whitney Dosty attended all of the University of Arizona volleyball games and admired the players while she watched them at the McKale Center.
Her father, Robbie, was a star basketball player at the UA from 1978-1981 and her sister had transferred to Arizona State to play basketball, so it wasn't hard for Dosty to decide five years ago that she wanted to stay in Tucson, her hometown, and become a Wildcat.
"I love it just because this is what I did when I was a kid, I came to the games," Dosty said. "Being able to look up at some of the players when you're younger and see them play I think it is a big deal."
Dosty, who played club volleyball for Club Cactus, also credits Arizona's head coach Dave Rubio and the coaching staff for another reason why she chose the UA as the best fit for her over Texas, UCLA and USC, among other schools.
"She's worked awfully hard the last five years to get where she's at," Rubio said. "I think she still has a tremendous amount of growth left in front of her, but she's starting to play with a little bit more confidence. Some of her athleticism is starting to come out. She's one of the more gifted athletes I've been around. She's starting to come into her own."
Since making the decision to become a Wildcat, Dosty has become one of Arizona's most talented hitters, but it hasn't been such an easy path for Dosty since having a breakout freshman year.
After graduating from Salpointe Catholic High School in 2006, Dosty immediately made an impact for the Wildcats as a freshman playing alongside UA standout Dominique Lamb.
She had an impressive season, appearing in all 109 games and coming in second on the team with 39 kills, earning her a spot on the Pac-10 All-Freshman Team.
"I think Dominique was a really good influence on me my freshman year," Dosty said. "She was always encouraging if I needed something. I think she helped me advance in my athletic career here."
Just as Dosty was at a high point, returning for her sophomore season in 2007, she endured a combination of knee injuries causing her to take a medical redshirt and watch her team from the sidelines.
When Dosty was young, she had Osgood-Schlatter's disease, a growing pain in your knees, but the pain eventually kept getting worse. If that wasn't hard enough to cope with, a tendon chipped a bone off in her knee, which she had to have removed.
Despite these injuries, Dosty took the setback in a positive way that helped her mature, develop, and see the sport in a different way.
"Sitting out is really tough, but it also helps," Dosty said. "You get to see another perspective of the game. When you're not playing you learn a lot just by watching. It was a bad year because I couldn't play, but it was kind of better because I got to sit back and see everything that I've been told to do."
In 2008, when Dosty returned for her junior year in school as a redshirt sophomore on the volleyball team, she did just that. She improved as a volleyball player, teammate and carried out the actions on the court that she was coached to do.
Dosty played in 99 sets registering 281 kills while being a threat to her opponents at the net with 61 blocks.
"She's been able to cope with the injuries in a very positive way," Rubio said. "I think in general, in the long run, it benefited her to be out for that one year and we redshirted her. She's been able to handle it. Her knees have been sore all the time and dealing with that aspect of it, but she's a pretty tough kid so she's been able to handle the pain that goes associated with those injuries."
Last season, Dosty came out ready as a redshirt junior, but with a little bad luck early in the season, she found it hard to find a groove because of an injury, and was hampered by it all season.