Liberty’s Knepper to play volleyball for Howard Payne University

The family of Abbie Knepper came out to support her as she signed her scholarship letter to play volleyball this fall at Howard Payne University. Pictured left to right are Malcom Goudeau Jr., Kelly Goudeau, Madyson Goudeau, Bruce E. George, Beulah M. George, Lillie Knepper, Bruce George, Abbie Knepper, Joanne Knepper, Debbie Goudeau, Malcom Goudeau Sr. and Stacy Eaglin.

Abbie Knepper, a 2021 senior at Liberty High School, has signed a volleyball scholarship with Howard Payne University in New Braunfels, Texas. The Knepper family and Liberty ISD held a signing day on Monday, May 3, to celebrate her achievement.

In addition to playing college-level volleyball, Abbie plans to pursue a pre-med education. She hasn’t narrowed down her career options yet but she knows she wants to work in a medical field.

In her senior year at LHS, Abbie was the co-captain and middle blocker for the Liberty Lady Panthers volleyball team, helping to lead the team to the quarterfinals round in the playoffs.

Liberty High School senior Abbie Knepper on Monday, May 3, signs her letter of intent to play volleyball for Howard Payne University.

Off the court, she excels academically and is a member of the National Honor Society. She is the daughter of Joanne Knepper and Bruce George of Liberty. Joanne is a Liberty ISD teacher and Bruce is involved with the athletic booster club. Abbie’s uncle, Malcom Goudeau, is a member of the Liberty ISD Board of Trustees.

Her family support was mentioned by Coach Karen Slack when discussing Abbie’s successes both on and off the court.

“Abbie is a smart kid so I know her grades at college will be good, too. She has tremendous support from her family. They push her and give her all the things she needs to succeed,” Slack said.

Abbie Knepper is pictured with two of the area’s top volleyball coaches – Liberty ISD Head Volleyball Coach and Girls Athletic Coordinator Karen Slack and Coach Denise Johnson with Xcel Volleyball. Johnson is renowned for achieving 600 wins during her lengthy coaching career for Tarkington ISD.

Slack, the girls athletic coordinator and head volleyball coach, has coached Abbie since seventh grade and calls her one of the most competitive student-athletes she has seen in the last 20 years.

“If I had to choose one of the top 10 females who works the hardest, I would pick Abbie Knepper. She is always working hard, always doing extra, always leading by example. She’s very athletic and can jump 26 inches off the floor. She is quick, very strong and does what she needs to do for the team,” Slack said.

Abbie is the oldest of two sisters in the Knepper-George home. Her little sister, Lillie, plays girls basketball at Liberty High School.

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