High School Sports, Nashville

Destiny Cherry: Summit Volleyball Star Begins Her Journey at Butler

INTERVIEW AND WRITEUP BY: LINDSEY HARPER (SUMMIT HS/UTCHATT)
PHOTOGRAPHY BY: JB BROOKMAN (SENIORITY PHOTOGRAPHY/CLOUT) AND BUTLER VOLLEYBALL
[WE INTERVIEWED DESTINY AT THE END OF THE REGULAR SEASON, WHILE THE SPARTANS WERE ABOUT TO HEAD INTO THE CONFERENCE PLAYOFFS. AFTER A GREAT SEASON, DESTINY WAS NOMINATED FOR VOLLEYBALL PLAYER OF THE YEAR, AT THE WILLCOS. SHE’S NOW AT BUTLER UNIVERSITY, GETTING READY TO ATTACK HER FRESHMAN SEASON. The bulldogs start their schedule on august 27th vs bowling green]

Destiny Cherry is a determined and ambitious Senior at Summit High School. She plays Club Volleyball and also for the Spartans in Spring Hill. She possesses a super passionate drive for the Game and still maintains a 4.3 GPA and is part of the National Honors Society and serves with Habitat For Humanity. Her glowing personality is so apparent to everyone around her, and her kindness is inspiring. This hard working athlete is planning to attend Butler University in Indiana this fall on a full volleyball scholarship. Along with her hefty volleyball scholarship Destiny also has been granted academic scholarships for her impressive scholarly efforts. 

While Destiny is academically advanced she also has been recognized by her peers and coaches for being extraordinary on and off the court. In the past few years she has been nominated for player of the year by the Tennessean twice, has received an MVP honorable mention, been athlete of the week, and received the district 12 all district award twice. Her awards as an individual and with a team have really set her apart to where she was getting recognition from colleges as a freshman in highschool. She is a fire in the volleyball community and the world can’t wait to see what all she accomplishes! 

Destiny Cherry from Summit High School Volleyball on the Red Carpet at the WILLCO Awards, June 2021

Destiny Cherry Class of 2021

Interview with Destiny

CLOUT: How did you know that you wanted to play volleyball as your primary sport?

Destiny: “I played basketball for most of my life, from like 3 to 13, and I decided I wanted to stay in shape out of season, so I tried volleyball and I really really liked it, so I played rec and that was cool so I decided that I wanted to try out for the schools volleyball team, and my coaches were so surprised that I had never played before. My coaches encouraged me to try travel volleyball, so I did it and made a one’s team which I was super excited about. I was so terrible but I decided to keep trying and really push myself and after a while I fell in love with it, so I pushed away basketball and went full force into volleyball.

CLOUT: Why is 23 an important number for you?

Destiny: “When I played basketball Michael Jordan used to be my inspiration, he was just so amazing to me and I always thought of him to be one of the greatest athletes in history. I picked up 23 in basketball… so when I switched to volleyball, I questioned whether it was the right number for me- because it correlates with basketball. I kept thinking about Michael Jordan and how he was one of the greatest athletes, so I decided that 23 was going to stay my number, because I wanted to be a great athlete also.”

CLOUT: Can you tell us something interesting about Butler’s volleyball program that made you choose them?

Destiny: “Coaching was a big thing for me. Everyone responds to coaching differently and I’m one of the people that likes to be knit-picked and told when I need to improve on something so I can fix it. I don’t exactly want yelling and screaming but I do want gentle encouragement and a coach that will keep me accountable. The Butler coaches… doesn’t matter if its the head coach or an assistant coach, have always been so supportive. They pick me up when I’m not doing as well, and tell me that I’m going to be okay and everything will work itself out. It helps so much to hear good reinforcement when I’m playing because I always want to know what I’m doing wrong and what I can do to make it better.”

CLOUT: Have you made any connections with the girls at Butler yet?

Destiny- “Yes! This is kind of an embarrassing story, but the first time I met them I was watching them play a game and it was after the game, and I wanted to meet the girls so one of the girls I had met at camp came up to me and was like, “hey! You should come down and meet the girls!”. When I tell you it was right after the game it was RIGHT after the game. So I come down there and they’re all in the locker room like fresh out of the shower all wrapped up in towels. I walked down there and the first thing I did was “Hey guys!”. I was so uncomfortable and so self conscious but they didn’t even blink twice, they were so kind and so sweet, and I was just really awkward the whole time. They are great girls though and I’m really excited to play with them.” 

Destiny Cherry. Photo by: Butler Athletics

CLOUT: Do you have someone you really look up to in the volleyball community?

Destiny- “My first coach when I first got into volleyball, her name was Abby West. She was my thirteens coach which was my first year playing and she helped me so much, like I don’t think I’ve grown as much as I did that year. Obviously I’ve been better other years so I’ve gotten to improve from other years, but to go from not knowing how to play volleyball at all to being somewhat decent at volleyball through her coaching just made such a difference. I’m also so excited that for my last year of club she’ll get to be my coach again! She’ll be my first season of volleyball, and my last season of club, so I’m so excited!”

CLOUT: Who would you say your biggest supporter is?

Destiny- “Probably my dad. He has always been such a sports guy, so he was always my basketball coach, my soccer coach. Whatever I was playing he wanted to be a part of it, and that’s no different with volleyball. He picked it up so quickly, and he’s always ready to offer me an encouraging word or make me laugh when I’m mad after a game. He’s just always been right there in the sports section.”

Destiny Cherry owns the Red Carpet at the WILLCO Awards. Image by JB Brookman, Seniority Photography/CLOUT

CLOUT: What has been your biggest challenge throughout your volleyball career?

Destiny- “So for volleyball kids start so young. I never really understood it until I started my thirteens team. When I walked onto the thirteens teams the other eleven girls have been playing together since they were ten, so when I came in not only was I terrible, but I didn’t know anyone, and I just haven’t experienced volleyball like everyone else. They were all so serious about it already. I think the hardest challenge was coming in so new, and having to both pick it up at everyone else’s level while still making friends and understanding that I kind of booted people off of the one’s team when I made it. It was so nice to have girls on that team that were so supportive and sweet and ready to welcome me with open arms.”

CLOUT: Have you always been academically interested in Butler?

Destiny- “When I started looking for colleges I had no idea where I wanted to go. I think a lot of people think that’s a bad thing. Of course a lot of kids have dream schools, and that’s amazing, but not knowing where you want to go isn’t the worst thing in the world. It leaves you so open  to seeing new schools and experiencing new campuses, so when I found out that Butler was interested in me for volleyball I did look into their academic program and they’re so smart! For a while I was terrified that those kids would be insanely smarter than I was, and I just wouldn’t fit in, but honestly I think I’m going to fit in great! The classroom size is small, so I’ll never feel uncomfortable asking questions to my teachers. Academic money really helps! Of course I have the volleyball full ride, but getting money because of my academics, and how smart I am just makes me feel so proud of how hard I’ve worked through highschool, and how hard I’ve worked through volleyball.” 

That infectious smile from Destiny Cherry… Butler Volleyball Freshman and former Summit High School star. Image by: Butler Volleyball

CLOUT: What is the best part about competing in your opinion?

Destiny- “I’ve always been really competitive, but there’s something so amazing about turning around on court, like after you’ve scored the greatest point, the crowd is going wild, and you get to turn around and look at your teammates and see that they’re just as excited about the point as you are. I love winning, but it’s also just nice to have a team that has great sportsmanship, and connection while you’re on court.”

CLOUT: How has the support from your teammates made you feel like a better player overall?

Destiny- “I love my teammates, and there’s something about playing sports with people that just makes you so much closer, like of course you get friends when you’re in school, but on a team you see your teammates at their worst, and at their best, and I think that connection just brings you so much closer to the girls that you are on court with, so when we’re cheering each other on, we are talking to each other off the court on the bench. They are just always so supportive! It literally doesn’t matter, I told them I had an interview , and they were all so excited for me, and they were hyping me up in the groupchat, and telling me I was gonna look so good in the pictures. It’s just so nice to have that type of friendship with your teammates.”

CLOUT: If you had to tell young girls who are in your position one thing what would it be?

Destiny- “Never give up. For a while that was so hard to think about because when I started volleyball, I’m telling you, I was so bad. Never give up! If you love the sport enough, keep playing, keep practicing, keep going to lessons, keep trying to get better because your work will pay off at the end of the day.”

WE WILL BE ROOTING YOU ON THIS SEASON, DESTINY! CHASE YOUR DREAMS!

CLOUT SPORTS NASVHILLE

PHONE: 615.454.8637

TO NOMINATE A NASHVILLE AREA ATHLETE FOR A STORY, EMAIL US AT: JBBROOKMANPHOTOGRAPHY@GMAIL.COM

FOR HIGH SCHOOL SENIOR PICTURES OR SPORTS PHOTOGRAPHY VISIT: www.seniorityphoto.com

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