Buckingham heads to NYU

Newport Harbor High senior Sarah Buckingham, an outside hitter who showed great improvement in her final season with the Sailors, will continue to play volleyball at New York University, she said Friday.

Buckingham, who earned All-Sunset League second-team honors, joins an NYU team that reached the quarterfinals of the NCAA Division III tournament last season. She'll also be a part of the Violets, who will have a new coach, Jolie Ward.

Chris Pinto served as the interim coach of the NYU women's volleyball team in 2010 and led the Violets to a 38-6 record and the aforementioned spot in the Elite Eight. He was promoted to associate head coach of the NYU men's volleyball team prior to the 2011 season.

The NYU women's team was ranked No. 15 in the American Volleyball Coach Assn. Division III Top 25 coaches' poll.

As a junior, Buckingham was a part of the Newport Harbor team that won the CIF State Division I championship, as well as the CIF Southern Section Division I-AA and Sunset League titles.

As a senior, the 5-foot-11 Buckingham helped the Sailors (22-13, 7-3 in league) finish second in the Sunset League and helped them reach the quarterfinals of the CIF Southern Section Division I-AA playoffs.

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