“Seek opportunities to show you care. The smallest gestures often make the biggest difference.”
John Wooden

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Christa Harmotto returns to Hopewell with a new kind of medal

By Bill Allmann 
Beaver County Times Sports Correspondent
November 18, 2014

Hopewell's Christa Harmotto
Hopewell, PA native Christa Harmotto Dietzen, right, spikes the ball for the United States against China's Junjing Yang during the women's Volleyball World Championships in Milan, Italy, Oct. 12. (Emilio Andreoli/ The Associated Press)

HOPEWELL TWP. -- Ten years ago, Christa Harmotto brought gold medals back to Hopewell High School from both the WPIAL and PIAA Volleyball championships.
When she returned Tuesday night, she brought a different gold medal back – one from the world championships that she won as a member of the US National Team.
“After winning those gold medals in high school, I had no idea how far my career would have gone,” said Christa, who also brought a new last name back to Hopewell. After her recent marriage, she is now Christa Harmotto Dietzen. “I knew I was going to college but I didn’t know about anything beyond that.
“Wherever I’ve gone, I’ve been thankful for the support of everyone who has helped me along the way.”
Along the way, Christa has built on the three WPIAL and one PIAA titles from Hopewell, winning two national titles at Penn State and while being named an All-American four times while there, and won a silver medal as a member of the 2012 Olympic team.
Before talking to local volleyball players for an hour about setting goals and values, Hopewell gave Harmotto Dietzen another honor – her number 20 was retired with a plaque to go alongside other Hopewell greats such as Tony Dorsett and Joe Colella in the Hopewell lobby.

“I didn’t know that was going to happen,” said Harmotto Dietzen. “My roots mean so much to me. They’ve been so important in making me the person I am, that blue collar work ethic and the values that were instilled in me.”
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