Newberg volleyball star heading to Eugene as reigning conference player of the year

Published: Sep. 30, 2022 at 4:53 PM PDT
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NEWBERG Ore. (KPTV) – A Newberg Tiger and one of the top volleyball seniors in the Pacific Northwest will soon be a Duck.

“It gives us that energy,” says Sophia Gregoire-Salagean, Newberg High School senior. “They are such a good support system. They may not know as much about volleyball, but they are here!”

In Newberg, Tigers’ cage prowls the best outside hitter in the state.

“It is kind of overwhelming sometimes, I am just trying to enjoy my experience because I had a great opportunity to commit early,” says Gregoire-Salagean.

Gregoire-Salagean passed college offers from Pittsburgh, Arizona and ASU to stay grounded with the green and yellow at the U of O.

“At first I wanted to be out of Oregon but then I was like, I am going to miss my family!” Gregoire-Salagean says. “My brothers were Duck fans, my parents were Ducks, like I have so much gear, so it was kind of nice when I committed, I was like, “I don’t need to buy anything” but I still bought a lot.”

Gregoire-Salagean is interested in studying medicine to perhaps go into human biology. Her late uncle Him Gregoire was an emergency room doctor who recently passed away from pancreatic cancer at the age of 53.

“I just saw the experience that other people gave to him and I am so thankful for people that are in the medical field,” says Gregoire-Salagean.

The reigning pacific conference player of the year is one of 11 Newberg seniors smashing the pumpkin this fall, before graduating early and enrolling down in Eugene this spring.

“I am going to miss my friends because I have been with them since kindergarten, preschool. I have known these people, like in the crowd, I’ve known them forever. My whole life,” Gregoire-Salagean says. “My mom. She’s a single mom. I don’t know how she does it honestly. She wakes up early to make me breakfast and makes my lunch and she works out a ton and I have seen that and she’s like, ‘hey, you want to go on a run with me?’ so she got me into that a lot earlier. It just kind of kept me into it and made me a stronger person and player.”