The club volleyball season is underway and Arizona volleyball 2025 commit Maya Flemister is already making waves. Flemister was noted by long-time prep volleyball writer John Tawa as a member of his weekly “Dream Team” for the week of Jan. 24.
Tawa’s article on Volleyballmag.com included praise for the high school junior’s offensive prowess.
Flemister is excited about the praise, but she’s more interested in how this season will help her prepare for her college career. It’s a collaboration between her, Arizona head coach Rita Stubbs, and her coaches with Elevation Volleyball Club.
“I’m really working on the speed of my gameplay,” Flemister said. “Because I just was talking with Rita and talking with my club coaches. I think we’ve all decided that volleyball can be fast sometimes, and for me to really succeed, I needed to get better at a more intense level of volleyball. For club, we’re gonna be playing in open, which is where all the best people play club, and so we think that will help me a lot. And I think, honestly, it’s just adding more skills to my skill set.”
The speed of the game is one thing freshmen often talk about when they are asked about the biggest change from the world of high school and club to Division I volleyball. Flemister didn’t just hear it from former teammates or coaches, though. It’s something her mother has impressed upon her since she was young.
Flemister’s mother Corie Flemister (nee Miles) played for Wake Forest from 1997 to 2000. She still has her name in the Deamon Deacons’ record books for blocks, block assists, and sets played among other stats.
“It’s really helpful to hear what her experience was,” Flemister said. “Obviously, it’s changed a little bit since she played in college, but it’s still something that not most kids have, I guess, and it’s really good to hear her thoughts and opinions on things.”
Her mom also guided her when it was time to make a college choice. They wanted to find a place where she would be at the right level both for her existing skill set and for growth. She likes that Stubbs is building the program and wants to be part of that development process.
“A big thing we didn’t want to happen to me is for me to outgrow a school because I still am developing in my volleyball play,” Flemister said. “And so we didn’t want me to outgrow a small Division I school and then be unsatisfied and have to enter the transfer portal.”
Stubbs’ involvement in the entire process has been important to Flemister, as well. Stubbs often talks about how much she likes recruiting. It was something that she didn’t want to give up when she became a head coach. That devotion made an impression on Flemister.
“I think me and Rita get along very, very well,” Flemister said. “And I just honestly, I love how she was talking to me consistently throughout the recruiting process because some coaches would talk to me for a couple months, and then do whatever they needed to do, and then they’d come back to talking to me, but Rita and I text all the time.”
It also helps that Tucson isn’t too far from home. The native of Centennial, Colo. says she thinks it’s close enough that her parents could “make it happen” if she needed something.
Flemister may have gotten her love for volleyball from her mom, but her drive to be a high-level athlete comes from both parents. Her dad, Zeron Flemister, played college football at Iowa and spent five seasons in the NFL. As a father, he made sure that his kids had a well-rounded athletic life.
“My dad...was a very good athlete as well and he believed a lot in multi-sport athletes because he was a personal trainer, and he thought it was the best way to prevent overuse injuries,” Flemister said. “So when we were younger, my parents asked us to pick a couple of sports that we liked. And so when I was younger, I played basketball and soccer, and we do like a summer swim team in my neighborhood to keep our body healthier during the offseason. My freshman year, I chose to play volleyball over everything else because it was my favorite.”
Volleyball stood out to her because she didn’t like the physical touching that came with basketball. Having the net between her and the other team was more comfortable for her. Her closest friends also tended to prefer volleyball.
Since then, it’s been about specialization. Flemister is using this club season to focus on specific skills she needs to develop before coming to Arizona. That means working on both the physical and mental parts of the game.
“We worked really hard this season on me trying to learn to run a slide, and I have learned how to do it,” Flemister said. “It’s not perfect yet, but I can run it consistently and I can score when I do. So I think it’s pretty fun to learn. And then I’m making my block a little bit better because I still need to learn how to not guess where the setter from the other team was gonna set. So we’re just working on reading the setter a little bit better.”
She still has one more year of high school volleyball before she lands in Tucson. In the meantime, she’s forging ties with her future teammates. She took her official visit to Arizona for the 2023 Red-Blue game. Outside hitter Paige Thies, who had already committed to Arizona at that point, visited the same weekend. The group of commits is strewn across the country from Thies in Oregon to Flemister in Colorado to libero Brookelyn Hatton in Kansas to opposite Renee Jones in Florida.
“I’m very excited,” Flemister said. “All of the 2025 recruits just made a group chat together, and I really enjoy talking to them and hearing what their plans are for the next couple of years to be ready to go there. I really enjoyed looking at all the stuff they accomplished by themselves during their club seasons or during their high school season. I’m really excited to play with all of them.”