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'I'm already focused on next year': After a long season, Logan Eggleston flips the page

Texas volleyball player Logan Eggleston is an All-American.

She's a team captain and a campus leader, too. While introducing Eggleston ahead of Saturday night's NCAA's championship match, Longhorns setter Jhenna Gabriel referred to the outside hitter as "your next president."

On top of all of that, Eggleston is now hungry.

Texas outside hitter Logan Eggleston tries to score on a slam against Kentucky in the third set of Saturday night's NCAA championship match. Texas lost in four sets, but should return virtually the entire roster. "Yeah, we're winning next year," she said after.

She recorded 21 kills but it was not enough in a four-set loss to Kentucky at the CHI Health Center in Omaha, Neb. The loss prevented Texas from winning its first national championship since 2012. The Longhorns ended their season with a 27-2 record and a new mission.

"Yeah, we're winning next year," Eggleston said in her postgame availability. "That's how we're all feeling. I think this, it leaves that bad taste in your mouth. ... I think we do have again so much to be proud of, but we're coming back stronger next year. I think there's a lot of blood boiling and we're ready to go."

Texas' Logan Eggleston reaches for a dig in the third set of the NCAA Volleyball Tournament championship match. This was her third season; she was named a first-team All-American and was the Big 12's player of the year.

The runner-up finish closed out Eggleston's third year with the Longhorns. Her 4.63 kills per set this season was the eighth-best average in school history. In addition to winning the Big 12's player of the year award, she was a first-team pick on the AVCA's All-American team.

Against Kentucky, Eggleston hit .400 on her 50 attempts. Her only attacking error came in the the fourth set.

"Logan's a special player and athlete. We set our defense up perfectly several times against her and she still scored," Kentucky coach Craig Skinner said. "We knew she was going to get kills."

Eggleston has been a team captain since her sophomore year, so it wasn't surprising to hear Texas coach Jerritt Elliott refer to her as a role model on Saturday. The rest of the Texas campus, though, got a chance to see Eggleston lead over the past nine months.

This summer, Eggleston and teammate Asjia O'Neal wrote a script for a Black Lives Matter video that the team produced. Eggleston is currently serving as the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee's president. She also was asked to be the only athlete on a committee that the university put together to study the history of "The Eyes of Texas."

"As a person, I just feel like Jerritt has given us the opportunity to grow so much and really find what we believe in," Eggleston said. "He just believes in us and believes in what we believe in. It's been a great year just to see everyone on my team mature and grow and just find things that they stand for."

Since the Big 12 elected to play volleyball in the fall, there was a 212-day gap between UT's first and final matches. The first match of Texas' season was played on Sept. 24.

As she talked to reporters over Zoom on Saturday night, Eggleston was already thinking about what's next for her game. She said her passing and defense can improve because "as an outside hitter, they're going to target me over and over again." She assessed that her performance on the service line must also get better.

"I want to practice again right now, there's so much unfinished business," Eggleston said. "There's just so many ways that we can keep improving and I feel like we have such good mojo right now. I hate that we are done.

"I'm already focused on next year."