Name: Mackenzie Webb
Fall Sport: Volleyball
Years on Varsity: 3.5 years
Height & Weight: 5’6”/130 lbs.
Experience: 6 years (began playing volleyball at Hamlet Middle School)
RSHS Academics: Webb is currently ranked second in her graduating class of 2018. As she participates in RSHS’ dual-enrollment program, Webb boasts a 5.115 GPA. Having been a part of the AP cluster since her sophomore year, Webb notes that taking the higher-level courses, coupled with her desire to succeed academically, is what has helped get her to where she is.
Currently, Webb is taking AP Chemistry, AP Earth and Environmental Science, AP World History, Honors English and Weight Training. At Richmond Community college, Webb has taken math and Spanish courses, and will take more classes in the spring. She’ll also take her Senate class in the forthcoming semester at RSHS.
RSHS Sports: As most of the Official Richmond County Athletes of the Week, Webb is a two-sport athlete. In the spring season, she’s a member of the Lady Raiders softball team. As the starting left fielder, Webb played her freshman and sophomore years on the junior varsity team, and was bumped up to varsity her junior year. She’ll return this spring for her final season on varsity.
Extracurricular Activities: It’s hard to imagine how Webb has any spare time between academics and being a multi-sport athlete, but she’s well immersed in several clubs and extracurricular activities at Richmond. Most notably, she’s the Senate’s historian, which tasks her with the responsibility of being the liaison between the student body and the Senate. As historian, Webb is also responsible for updating the Senate’s Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat pages.
Webb is also a general member of RSHS’ National Beta Club, an organization she’s been a part of since attending Hamlet Middle School. During her junior year, in which she served as a junior marshal, Webb also was inducted into the National Honors Society. Even more, Webb participates in the Fellowship of Christian Students, an after-school club that meshes athletics with fellowship and worship.
Outside of school, Webb is heavily involved in helping out around Richmond County. Along with several of her volleyball teammates, Webb volunteers at the Richmond County Humane Society, helping out with the needs of the animals. Also a member of Second Baptist Church in Hamlet, Webb has participated in several trips with the church’s “World Changers” program. Geared toward helping out less fortunate communities throughout the United States, World Changers travels and renovates recreation centers and other community gathering spots. Over the last few years, Webb has gone to Alabama and Missouri to assist with the program.
Hobbies: Expressing her love for reading and literature, Webb said that her biggest hobby outside of playing sports is getting lost in a great book. She is currently reading the Harry Potter series with her younger sister, which Webb says she thoroughly enjoys. She has also recently started taking up photography, and runs all over the county taking shots of friends and family.
Other things the 17-year-old enjoys doing in her spare time is watching movies and hanging out with her friends, many of whom are on the volleyball team. Speaking of volleyball, Webb also played club volleyball with AC Sandhills for one season.
Interesting Fact: For her interesting fact, Webb shared her unique bond with her dad, Brian Webb. As her father is in the North Carolina National Guard, which requires him to travel a lot, Webb cherishes a shared interest in running with her dad.
Any time the Webbs travel, they make it a point to run together and explore. Some notable places they’ve run are New York City, Washington, D.C., Orlando and Nassau, Bahamas. Sometimes they run competitively in 5k races, or other times, like in D.C., they just run to check out the sites.
College Aspirations: Arguably one of our most studious athletes to be featured, as there have been several who rank in the top 20 in their graduating class, Webb tops the list. Having the class of 2018’s second highest GPA, only behind fellow senior Shelby Matheson, Webb is currently in the process of applying to three colleges throughout the state: North Carolina State University, the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill and UNC Wilmington.
She is currently in the middle phases of two major scholarships: the Park Scholarship (NCSU) and the Morehead-Cain Scholarship (UNC Chapel Hill), both of which are full-ride scholarships based on academic merit. Webb has interviewed for both and is awaiting to hear back if she’s made it to the next phase.
Hoping to major in either English or psychology, Webb says she eventually wants to enter the criminal law field. This past summer, Webb attended Governor’s School for two months on the campus of Meredith College in Raleigh, N.C. While there, she and 300 other students studied their desired subjects, and Webb noted that it was a great experience that helped her prepare for college.
“It’s always been my dream to attend UNC Chapel Hill,” Webb said. “To be in consideration for both scholarships is an awesome feeling. I’m hoping that I get one of them.”
Mentor: Each week, the RO asks its athlete of the week to explain who her mentor is. Webb couldn’t decide between two people, so she chose her dad and her head volleyball coach Shellie Wimpey.
Brian Webb: Webb says she looks up to her dad for a lot of reasons, but none more than the fact that he’s ever present in her life despite being away with the military.
“Even though my dad travels a lot, he’s always involved,” Webb said. “He’s taught me what it means to have confidence and leadership skills, which helps me play volleyball and in life.”
Shellie Wimpey: Having coached Webb in two sports, and taught her the entire time she’s been at Richmond, Wimpey and Webb have developed a unique bond, and is something Webb is thankful for.
“Wimpey has coached me in volleyball and softball my whole high school career,” Webb noted. “We spend a lot of time together and she’s always there to talk to me. She’s someone who I definitely look up to.”
Player of the Week Stats: Webb’s role as the setter on the volleyball team isn’t the “flashiest,” but her play this season has been instrumental in Richmond’s unprecedented success.
During the first two matches of the Sandhills Athletic Conference tournament, Webb has dished out a total of 50 assists, while racking up 14 digs, two aces and one kill.
Describe this year’s 24-0 run. What’s it like to have been able to be a part of this team and make history?
“It’s been a really amazing season so far,” Webb said smiling. “We started out the season wanting to go 22-0, and we accomplished that. I think the team knew we could be successful, and we’ve proven that.
“The key to our success has been how close the team is,” Webb added. “We are a family. All of us spend a lot of time together on and off the court, and that helps us in each match. We push each other because we know what we’re capable of accomplishing.”
What’s your expectations for the SAC tournament and the state playoffs? What is different about this team that will allow you to make it past the second round this year?
“Obviously, our goal is to win the SAC tournament and beating (Seventy-First and Scotland) is a great start,” Webb said. “But we all want that banner; we want to win it all and be state champions.
“In order to do that, we need to work hard in practice and continue to get better,” Webb added. “If we do our best and push each other, I think we have a real shot at doing something special.”
Head coach Shellie Wimpey shares a strong bond with her senior setter; so much so that she braids Webb’s hair before each match, a superstition that has proven to work well this season. Wimpey acknowledged all of Webb’s characteristics and how it’s helped the Lady Raiders win.
“Mackenzie is a joy to have on the team,” Wimpey said of her senior setter. “She has such great work ethic; and she’s a perfectionist. Everything she does has to be done absolutely perfect. She’s so deserving as being nominated.
“Because she’s our setter, Mackenzie’s work on the court is often under the radar,” Wimpey said. “She doesn’t go up and get a ton of kills, but she does a great job getting the ball up to our hitters. Mackenzie has gotten a lot better over the course of the season, and she’s really athletic. Through her hard work she’s been able to set balls more consistently and has improved her tipping throughout the season.”
Look for Webb on the Richmond Observer’s flagship news program Live at 5, as she’ll be in studio for Wednesday’s edition.