Sam Brunelle ready for big season at UVA as grad student

Published: Oct. 26, 2022 at 3:30 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - Greene County’s Sam Brunelle joins the Wahoos this year as a grad student.

Brunelle has battled a handful of injuries during her playing career, but she says she’s fully healthy and ready for a big season.

Brunelle made her Virginia debut in the team’s Blue-White Scrimmage earlier this month.

She graduated from Notre Dame in three years, earning her communications degree, but she still has two years of playing eligibility left.

Brunelle considered a handful of schools to continue her playing career, but she chose to come home to UVA.

“I came here in my official visit and absolutely loved it. I got the same feeling I got when I knew Notre Dame was right for me in high school. I knew if I got that feeling again, I didn’t need to entertain any other offers. I committed on the day I was leaving, called the other coaches and thanked them for their time, but I’ve committed to UVA,” Brunelle said.

Brunelle was sold on what Virginia was building under its new head coach, Amaka “Mox” Agugua-Hamilton.

“She was a huge reason why I wanted to come here. It was like Coach McGraw when I went to Notre Dame. People, that’s a big thing for me. Loyalty, culture, family, atmosphere, I could feel that from Coach Mox the first time I talked to her,” Brunelle said.

When asked what she thought about this year’s team, Brunelle said: “We’re going to be special. Being at Notre Dame last year, we scouted UVA. As I watched film I saw the potential that their team had. I knew that they had talent and had pieces, they just weren’t putting it together. Coach Mox has been putting it together since she’s been here.”

Brunelle says she adds leadership and versatility to Virginia’s team.

“She can shoot the heck out of the ball, but she has more to her game. She can rip and drive, she can handle the ball really well especially for her size and she can pass the ball. She’s a tremendous passer. Offensively she’s going to help us tremendously,” Coach Mox said.

And all of Brunelle’s friends and family will be here to watch.

“It’s going to be so exciting. All of my family has gotten their season tickets and everything. Greene County will be representing I’m sure a lot. It’s awesome, I always loved playing in front of them in Greene at William Monroe, so being able to have that again is going to be very special,” Brunelle said.

Brunelle says her goal is to play professionally in the WNBA.

While at UVA, she’ll work towards getting her master’s degree in education.

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