by Dave Pedersen
Molly Schultz has been one of the top athletes in Rockford school history, excelling in gymnastics, volleyball and track and field. She holds three school volleyball records and four in track and field.
Schultz was named the Rockford Athena Award winner, recognizing outstanding female athletes from Minnesota in both public and private high schools. The banquet scheduled for May 6 has been postponed until further notice due to the virus pandemic.
In summary, Schultz competed at state in 10 events and was named to the All-State volleyball first team this past season. She served as captain for five teams, earning 14 varsity letters. She was a team most valuable player six times and earned nine All-Conference awards.
“I started gymnastics when I was 5-years-old at North Shore Gymnastics,” said Schultz, who starting competing in sixth grade. In seventh grade she qualified for state at Rockford in vault, floor exercise and uneven bars. “It was a little disappointing that we did not have enough girls to compete as a team my eighth-grade year, but it made my decision easier to leave the sport for good.”
Schultz said it was a good time for her to start focusing on volleyball in the fall even though it was tough leaving a sport she had been in for so long.
“I started doing off-season training for volleyball my seventh grade year at Minnesota Select Volleyball Club in Maple Grove,” said Schultz, who played for the select team for six seasons. “Participating in other sports on top of off-season training greatly helped me develop as an athlete.”
Volleyball is where Schultz made her biggest mark. She lettered six times, was a three-year captain and named most valuable player four times. She was All-State honorable mention as a junior and All-State first time as a senior.
Schultz set school records for 21 ace serves in a match (also a state record), 114 ace serves in a season and 324 ace serves in a career. She reached 1,000 set assists by her sophomore season and cleared 1,000 digs in her senior year.
In college next year at Kansas State, Schultz accepted a scholarship to be a defensive specialist at the Division 1 school.
Track and field has provided Schultz with the opportunity to show her talent in several events over the past six seasons. She is a two-time captain and two-time team MVP with maybe one more chance.
Along with capturing several conference meet titles, Schultz won two Section 5A titles in the long jump and was part of two 4X400 and one 4x200 section title teams. The Rocket 4x200 relay placed third at state last spring when Schultz also placed fourth in the pole vault and sixth in the long jump. She holds school records in the school open 400-meter run, long jump and in two relays.
“Not being able to compete on the track team for one last season is something that no one expected to happen,” said Schultz. “We have been looking forward to this season since the conclusion of state last June. We had a lot of potential and big goals for our team this season, so it was hard hearing that it was getting postponed, possibly being canceled.”
Not only has Schultz excelled in athletics, but also in academics. The three-year member of the National Honor Society has posted a 4.26 grade point average. She was Academic All-State in volleyball her senior season.
Schultz is a member of Fellowship of Christian Athletes. She was part of NCL, Inc. (National Charity League), a mother/daughter organization emphasizing community service, leadership and cultural experiences.
Through NCL, Schultz was a frequent volunteer at the Interfaith Outreach Center, Special Olympics, Folkstone Nursing Home and the Ronald McDonald House.