It’s no secret that siblings are known to have a hard time getting along, let alone spend any length of time together without butting heads. But for sisters Abby and Sophie Karren, the years spent playing volleyball dispelled that cliche and forged a bond on and off the court.
The two have played together since both were in elementary school, having followed in their big sister Hanna’s footsteps. A Stansbury alumna herself, Hanna played on the Stallions girls team until she graduated in 2018 and actually coached Abby and Sophie in Junior Stallions.
“She was the one who started us in volleyball,” Abby said.
Despite being so close in age, Abby and Sophie avoided any sibling rivalry and attributed the time spent on the same team as the foundation for the two building trust and respect for one another.
“We have two older siblings and they seem to fight a lot, but whenever our parents talk about me and Sophie they say we are never fighting,” Abby said. “We get along really well, and I think it’s from playing volleyball together.”
With the 2023-24 girls volleyball season in the books, coach Bailey Moss reflected on the sisters and what they’ve meant to the team through the years. This past season, the sisters helped the team win 12-straight games, while Sophie led the team with 230 kills as outside hitter.
“It was cool that two of my best players are sisters,” Moss said. “They are great girls who work so hard and do a great job leading the program.”
In addition to their older sister, the duo also cited Stallions volleyball coach Moss as a big influence in their playing careers. As co-captains, along with Malia Opeta, the leadership role fell largely on their shoulders and they gave Moss a lot of credit for readying them for such an important position on the team.
“You can tell she cares about us, personally,” Abby said. “We’ve been through a lot with her; she treats us like daughters.”
While she has decided to forgo playing volleyball after high school, she said she’ll always look back fondly on her time at Stansbury.
“This was my favorite season I’ve played high school volleyball; It was super fun,” Abby said. “It’s sad that this is our last year playing together and it was pretty hard for both of us to go through that.”
Sophie noted that it will take some adjusting to not playing with her sister anymore, but cherished the time spent with her as a teammate.
“[I’ll miss] all of the bus rides, all of the things you get to do on the team together,” Sophie said.
Abby plans to attend college and pursue a degree at Southern Utah University to become a physical education teacher. Her ultimate goal is to return to Tooele County and coach volleyball at the new Deseret Peak High School.