SCA's Fain goes out a champion
Tinsley Fain closed her high school career just the way she hoped.
The Spartanburg Christian Academy standout entered her senior season with three straight SCISA 2A state titles and didn't want to go out without a clean sweep. The Warriors gave Fain her wish as they sailed to the title, and she earned SCISA 2A Player of the Year honors.
Fain led the state in all classifications with 154 aces and was second with 1,022 assists. The Gardner-Webb commitment also was named to the SCISA 2A North-South all-star team.
To cap her year, Fain has been named the Herald-Journal/GoUpstate Preps Volleyball Player of the Year. She said getting the award took her by surprise.
“I thought it was kind of unexpected and cool,” Fain said. “I didn't know that I had even been nominated, so it was really surprising and automatically I was excited about it.”
Fain said even though she attends a small school, winning a player of the year award proves that she can play with anyone.
“I feel like the talent is starting to be more evenly spread out through all the schools,” she said. “It's making them a lot more noticeable, and a lot of people are stepping up more. It's definitely an honor to know that I'm up there with the big 4A public schools and say that I'm neck-and-neck with some of them. I'm here at a 2A SCISA private school, and they're at a huge 4A public school. It's just cool to think about.”
Winning state championships each year adds to Fain's legacy.
“It was definitely a huge deal for me,” she said. “I've got all four — freshman, sophomore, junior and senior. To go out my senior year and win all four years in high school is a really big deal to me. It's was really an honor for me to say that I've won all four under my mom (head coach Monica Fain).”
Monica Fain said she felt more pressure as a coach to win this past year because of her daughter and the remainder of the senior class.
“It was a little more for the senior year where I felt a little more pressure on me because I wanted it for them for so bad, especially because she's my daughter,” she said. “I don't know if you want it more, but you want it for the kids. You'll get over it, but they have that one opportunity. It's special to be mom and coach.”
Tinsley said she's looking forward to getting to Gardner-Webb and testing her skills against stronger competition now that she's closed the book on playing at the high school level.
“I'm definitely expecting a lot of good competition,” she said. “I'm expecting everyone to work just as hard as I do or as I have worked. I want to play. I'm hoping for the best.”