Lauren Stivrins’ grandmother is the season ticket holder. Later, her niece became one of the stars of the Nebraska volleyball team | Volleyball

New Opal Stivrins

Opal Stivrins (centre) watches the Seniors Day ceremonies for the Nebraska volleyball team on November 19 including her niece, Lauren Stivrins.

FRANCIS GARDLER, Lincoln Journal Star

Lauren Stivrins and Nebraska volleyball on the way home.

The all-American female high school student committed to Huskers in 2014 when she was a junior in high school. She’s been at Lincoln since 2016, playing for the Huskers for the past five seasons.

But there is someone in her family who has an even longer history with the show.

Lincoln resident Opal Stivrins, Lauren’s grandmother, has had tickets to the Nebraska games since the 1990s. She still has those tickets, and over the past few seasons she’s seen her grandchild. His daughter became one of the stars of the team.

Think about how great that must be.

And while going to the games and seeing Lauren Stivrins knock and play with fire and joy has been a treat, Stivrins coming to Nebraska also allows Opal to see her more than she did when Lauren was growing up in Scottsdale , Arizona.

Opal Stivrins, 82, a 12-year-old grandmother and seven-year-old great-grandmother, said: “It is a wonderful gift to have grandchildren here as most of my grandchildren are close by and I can attend activities. their movements. “And I only get to see Lauren when I go to Arizona in the winter for a few weeks, or when I go to one of her club tournaments. So it’s really great. ”

Opal’s husband is Kaz Stivrins, and she is the stepmother of Alex, Lauren’s father, who grew up in Lincoln. Alex’s mother, Patricia, passed away in 1989. Opal has been part of the family since 1991.

Kaz died in 2008 when Lauren was 10 years old. Kaz and Opal spend several weeks in Arizona each winter and will follow Lauren and her siblings in their activities.

Opal Stivrins was with Husker volleyball for many years before Stivrins joined the team. She loves the players, is part of the fan base, and, well, they win a lot.

So what happens when your niece actually joins the team?

“Of course it’s very exciting,” says Opal Stivrins. “I think it’s good for the whole family to have her here. Her freshman year, I know she called me one day and she said, ‘Grandma, I’m really sick. I have mono and they told me I have to get out of the dorm. Can I come and stay at your place? ‘ So I left her here for a couple of weeks. “

As Lauren grew up, her family couldn’t always go to Lincoln every vacation.

Now, the family is spending more time together.

“It’s great to have her here,” said Opal Stivrins. “But you also have to stand back and let her get her college, and pave the way for her. And I think the whole family made it. We were here if she needed us. And when we wanted to see her, she was very pleased with her time. But she also has to have her time. And when she’s hungry, she’ll call and say, ‘I want to come over for dinner.’ And it’s nice to just have her visit and have dinner.”

As for Lauren’s first years on the show, Opal rarely missed a home game. This season, due to illness, she can’t attend every home game, but she has all the digital TV subscriptions she needs to watch.

And Opal made sure she was at the Devaney Sports Center for Lauren’s Seniors Day ceremony two weeks ago, sitting in the sixth row behind Husker’s bench and wearing a sweater with his name and number on it. Lauren on it.

Lauren’s older sister, Amber, is on Georgia’s volleyball team, and Opal also came to watch her play this season.

Lauren Stivrins is one of Husker’s all-time greats. She started on a national championship team as a redshirt freshman in 2017. The following season, she helped Nebraska almost win another title by 19 kills with a 0.615 hit rate. in a national championship loss to Stanford.

The Stivrins have been the All-American first-place team twice and the All-American second-place team once.

Opal Stivrins loves to see Lauren’s enthusiasm – and smile – during matches.

And ever since Lauren started playing for Husker, Opal has taken on a new identity.

“I have to tell you, before Lauren came here, I was known as Opal Stivrins, and now I’m Lauren’s grandmother,” Opal Stivrins said. “Everybody knows. Most of my friends save all the newspaper clippings for me. And I get lots of texts and things. When I’m at home playing games, I have a few friends who are avid volleyball fans, and they text me all the time.”

Opal Stivrins with Lauren Stivrins

Nebraska volleyball player Lauren Stivrins with her grandmother, Opal Stivrins, after Nebraska won the Big Ten championship in 2016.

Courteous photo

Penn State vs.  Nebraska, 11.19

Nebraska’s Lauren Stivrins (26) is hugged by coach John Cook during the Seniors Night festival after the Huskers beat Penn State 3-0 on November 19 at the Devaney Sports Center.



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