LOGAN, Utah – Utah State head volleyball coach Rob Neilson has announced the signing of two additional players to the team’s roster, completing the 2020 signing class. Middle blocker Inka Mehtola and setter Ashlee McUne will join the Aggies this fall.
The second international signee for the Aggies this year, Mehtola comes to Utah State from Pattijoki, Finland, where she played club volleyball for Raahen Lentopallo (2014-19) and most recently, LP Viesti. She was an all-star honoree at the Finnish Junior Championships in 2017 and 2018, leading her team to a second-place finish those seasons. With LP Viesti last season, Mehtola’s team took second in the Finnish Cup.
In addition to her volleyball career, Mehtola is a successful high jumper. She took first in the Finnish-Swedish National Match in 2018, and she medaled at the Finnish Junior Championships six times in her career, earning four silver and two bronze medals.
Mehtola is a 2020 graduate of Salon Lukio in Salon, Finland.
“We are excited to have Inka join our program. She is a wonderful person, a disciplined student and is passionate about the process of improving her game,” Neilson said. “She has participated at the highest levels in Finland, and is also an accomplished high jumper. She will bring great athleticism and experience to our team.”
McUne joins the Aggies as a sophomore, having spent her freshman season at Utah State Eastern. She helped the Eagles to a 27-9 overall record, as the team finished 12th in the NJCAA rankings. McUne ended the season with 1,437 assists, leading all NJCAA players in the regular season. She averaged 11.5 assists over the year, the third-most of all NJCAA Division I players. McCune finished the season with 341 digs, 39 service aces, 35 blocks and 36 kills, and was one of three USU Eastern players to earn first-team all-Region 18 honors.
A local product, McUne prepped at Green Canyon High School (2017) and Sky View High School (2016, 2018). She was named to the 4A all-state first team as a senior, after helping the Bobcats to the state title. McUne was also a two-time all-region and all-valley honoree. She ended the 2018 season with a 4A-best 838 assists, to go along with 236 kills, 66 service aces and 45 kills.
At the club level, McUne played for Cache Valley Volleyball Club starting at age 11. In addition to her volleyball career, she was a four-year letterwinner in track & field, placing at state in both the shot put and javelin in 2017 and 2018. McUne will play for the Aggies in 2020, then plans to serve an 18-month mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
“We are excited to have Ashlee join our team. She brings a competitive fire and high volleyball IQ to our program,” Neilson said. “She wants to be great on the court and is equally driven in the classroom. We look forward to her contribution to our program before she leaves for an LDS mission in 2021.”