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Who the Buc are you? with Eva Laun-Smith

This article appeared in the September 23rd edition of the Round Table

The Round Table sat down with outside hitter and last year’s recipient of Female Athlete of the Year, Eva Laun-Smith’21, as she applied her skin care routine. Laun-Smith has been rocking the Midwest Conference with 176 kills and 23 aces this season. 

Round Table: Where are you from?

Eva Laun-Smith: I’m from Beloit, Wisconsin. I never left.

Do you plan on staying?

Definitely not. I can’t see myself staying in one place, maybe because I’ve stayed here for so long.

What’s your major?

I’m a history major and as of right now I have no minor, but I’m going to try and finesse and make my own minor because I’ve taken two different language classes: German and now Japanese, but I don’t think Japanese falls into a modern language, so I’m going to try and finesse making it a minor.

Do you watch asmr?

Yes I do. I love asmr. It calms me. 

Does it get you in the mood for volleyball?

I wish! I’ve never tried it. I’m going to try it for our home game on Tuesday. I’ll listen to some loud chomping and smacking, and maybe it’ll get me in the mood to play some volleyball.

How long have you been playing volleyball?

I’ve been playing volleyball since my freshman year of high school, so it’s been about 7 years now. It’s shorter compared to other people, but still a decent amount of time.

What position do you play?

I’m an outside hitter, so I play on the left wing in the front row and back row.

Do you prefer front row or back row? 

When I’m not doing well I prefer back row, but I really like to hit. I get really competitive in the front row because I like to kill the ball. I would say that now since I’m playing more back row, I’m learning to love both equally.

What goes through your head when you kill the ball?

I’m like, “I just stomped them bitches. They can’t dig this, I’m gonna send them another one.” Sometimes I send them another one, and sometimes I send the bleachers another one. Sometimes I think, “Dang, I could’ve hit her in the face instead.”

How do you feel the season’s been going?

I think that the season’s been going really well. We have a new coach. I think she’s a really good coach. She pushes us to be mentally tough, which I think is really good. I think people this year all really have a drive to win. We have very few people on the team, so everybody needs to be in the right headspace going into the game in order for us to be successful. I think we’re usually in that right headspace. I’m excited for conference.

What does the typical practice look like?

Sometimes we have a meeting before we run, which is usually a reflection of what happened at a game. It can be really long because we go in depth on what we need to fix. If it’s a lighter day, we’ll jog a few times around the gym, but sometimes we run for time. Then we do our dynamics and do sprints.

Do you have any weird traditions before a game?

We always ‘ride that pony’. Basically we do a chant with lyrics and make a circle with people in the middle. Then we dance front to front, back to back, and side to side, and throw a little booty action in. I personally throw a little back action. It really gets people pumped and ready to be loud during the game.

Is there anything you do personally?

I try to come in and have a really good warmup, which is something I’ve been focusing a lot on this year. Theoretically, if I have a good warmup, then I should do well in the game. I like to dance during warmup if there’s K-pop or any hip-hop.

What’s your favorite part of the sport?

Probably my freshman year when we beat Grinnell, because that was bonkers. It was their homecoming game and we stomped on their necks. It was a close game, but we won. That was one of the games where we really showed our true potential and what we could be.

Who was your first crush?

  My first crush was Sasuke from Naruto. That’s crazy. I have a thing for boys who are broken and need to be fixed. I don’t even know who my first non-cartoon character crush was. My first person crush was Gregory from The Little Vampire. My little seven year old self could not handle those emotions. I was very angsty as a child.

What’s your wildest fantasy?

Me. My strap. Two guys.

If you could go on a date with any historical figure, who would it be?

I would want to go on a date with Abraham Lincoln because I know he was racist, but I just want to see how racist he was and what that conversation would be like. But I also really want to go on a date with Malcolm X. That man was so smart, and after reading about him. I want to know what he was like as a person. I would take him to Korean barbecue.

Come see Eva play this week’s home games on Tuesday at 7 and Saturday at 1 – especially if you’re an angsty boy who needs fixing.

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