McGill, LSU volleyball star going into Mobile Sports Hall of Fame

Mobile County


When discussing the greatest high school athletes in Mobile history, Nyla Shepherd has to be part of the conversation. A dual sport star at McGill-Toolen High School, Shepherd was a key member of four consecutive large school state volleyball champions and the leader of an undefeated state title winning basketball squad.

Thursday, Shepherd will be inducted into the Mobile Sports Hall of Fame.

With Shepherd playing, “The Dirty Dozen” compiled a four year record of 222-9, including 51-0 in 1985, and 70-2 in 1987. Shepherd’s teams won four consecutive 6A State Volleyball crowns. The left-handed hitter was All County for three years and All State for two seasons. Shepherd was a Converse High School All-American in her senior season, 1987. 

Shepherd was also dominant on the basketball court. In her senior season, the Yellow Jackets went 29-0 and captured the 6A State Championship. Shepherd was named All State.

Carla Berry played both volleyball and basketball with Shepherd.

“What I remember most about Nyal was her tremendous work ethic,” Berry recalled. “That is the reason she was able to dominate at both McGill and L.S.U.”
Shepherd followed up her amazing career at McGill-Toolen by earning All American honors at L.S.U. and leading the Tigers to an unprecedented level of success in volleyball. She and her McGill teammate Monique Adams, a 2015 inductee into the Mobile Sports Hall of Fame, made an immediate impact when they arrived in Baton Rouge. The Tigers would win three consecutive SEC regular season and tournament championships.L.S.U. appeared in back to back volleyball Final Fours in 1990 and 1991. Those remain the Tigers’ only Final Four appearances.

The Tigers’ regional final victory in 1990 is etched in L.S.U. sports lore. Playing in Austin, and trailing Texas two games to none, Shepherd and Adams led the Tigers to an incredible comeback victory.

Shepherd was All-SEC First Team in 1989, 1990, and 1991 and an Asics Tiger All American in 1989. She was NCAA All South in 1990. Shepherd competed in the 1989 U.S. Olympic festival.

She is still LSU’s career leader in kills with 1,735. Shepherd ranks second all-time in kills per set (3.46), matches played (149), sixth in hitting percentage(.313), and ninth in career blocks (430).

The Mobile Sports Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony and Banquet will be held Thursday May 2 at the Battle House Hotel. Tickets are $100 and available at Joining Shepherd in the MSHF Class of 2019 are Luis Gonzalez, Roy Patton, Danny Sheridan, Rick Trickett, and the late Rea Schuessler. 


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