Why Gabi Garcia Fernandez moving to Italy is a big deal
Former Brigham Young University star Gabi Garcia Fernandez signed his first pro contract. He played for A.S. Volley Lube which is big for his career as Italy is a volleyball hub. As a fresh graduate, Gabi will have momentum heading into his first year in pro volleyball.
Gabi was one of the superstars of the college volleyball scene in the United States. He was an attacker as he scored 305 spikes and 42 service aces in the 2021 season. He ranked second all-time in career aces at BYU, second only to fellow standout Taylor Sander.
BYU’s history is filled with superstars with Gabi as its latest one. He was also named the Player of the Year by the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) in 2021 which was a big honour for him. He is grateful that he received the award because it’s a sign that he worked hard to get it.
Gabi said, ‘My heart is very full right now. This is one of the awards that not everybody can win and especially not a Puerto Rican — the guy that is not the same, common American kid, to be honest. I’ve received a lot of love today from a lot, a lot of people that I haven’t heard from in a long time. Today has been a real grateful day in my life’.
Gabi deserves to play pro volleyball
Even in a shortened season in 2020, Gabi still set records as a top star for BYU. He broke the records for most aces in a season. He also led the NCAA in both points per set and aces per set which showed that he’s one of the most effective attackers in the US.
2021 was an even better campaign for him individually. They did not win the title as the University of Hawaii won the championship. Gabi didn’t win a title in his BYU career but he was an amazing performer. Since he performed at that level, it is obvious that he deserves to be playing pro volleyball on the biggest stage.
Gabi took his opportunity by signing with A.S. Volley Lube which is a team that is well known for its consistent success since the US does not have a top-tier league.
Gabi is excited about the opportunity
Gabi is excited as he will be given a chance to shine. He said, ‘I thank the management and the coach of Lube for the confidence in my abilities. I am thrilled to be able to train with a team full of champions and to be able to improve my volleyball. I can’t wait to be in Italy and to put myself at the service of the team’.
Hopefully, Gabi can maximize his potential to be one of the best volleyball players in the world.
Words: Cholo Martin