Bricio, a 6-foot-2 outside hitter, is a Lady of Troy volleyball player for the University of Southern California, and was inducted for her Achievement in Athletics throughout her collegiate tenure. She was among 10 inductees on the list that honors Cinco de Mayo.
Bricio, who was named the 2015 American Volleyball Coaches Association Player of the Year, was raised in Guadalajara, Jalisco, México.
In her final Trojan season, she led the entire nation in scoring with 803 points and was named to the First Team in the AVCA All-American and was the Pac-12 Player of the Year.
And now she can add another accolade to her personal best.“It’s a really, really big honor just to be recognized as a Latina,” said Bricio prior to her shaking hands with several of California’s lawmakers on the assembly floor. “I’m just really honored to represent the Latina community.”
Bricio was just 17 years old when she moved to the United States after completing high school in Guadalajara. She came to the U.S. because she was accepted to the University of Southern California’s women’s volleyball team.
“When I first came here (to the United States), I saw these amazing players, everyone was like really tall,” said Bricio.
Upon arrival to the southern California, the challenges weren’t just on the hardwood, but a slight language barrier as well.
“I knew the language, but it was hard. You don’t speak English in México. It’s Spanish, Spanish, Spanish. So when I got here, I just wasn’t used to it,” she remembers.
She’s the youngest of three children born to Guillermo Bricio and Estella Ramos. She comes from a family of athletes. It was Estella who taught her daughter Samantha how to play volleyball. And Guillermo competed for México’s national men’s basketball team.
“My oldest brother Irvin played volleyball with the Mexican national men’s squad and then in the pros. And my other brother, Nijisky, he played volleyball, basketball and now he’s in rugby,” she Samantha.
She understands that with the honor of the Latino Spirit Award comes a bit of regard for other Latinas.
“You have to work really hard, you have to make a lot of sacrifices, but in the end everything is going to be worth it,” she said. “I actually went on the (Latino Spirit) website and saw some of the honorees. It’s a really big honor to be a part of that list,” she said.
Samantha will likely travel to Europe specifically Italy, where hopes are high that she will sign a professional contract to play volleyball.
She hopes to play professionally for an unspecified amount of time then return to obtain a master’s degree in criminal psychology.
“My dream job would be to work for the FBI. Criminal profiling is really interesting,” she said.
Contact the Reporter: