CLOQUET, Minn. -

Virginia junior Lexi Ahrens, one of the Northland's top volleyball prospects, announced her verbal commitment to the University of North Dakota Monday.

Ahrens, the Reigning Iron Range Conference Player of the Year, earned All–American honors at the AAU Under-16 National Championships last summer.

Ahrens is proud to have accpeted a Division I scholarship, and says getting this decision out of the way relieves some stress.

"I feel like I can relax and just focus on school now, high school season and club season," said Ahrens before Virginia's match at Cloquet Tuesday.  "I don't have to worry about where I want to go, what I want to do, it's just a relief off my shoulders.  I'm really excited, it's been my dream since I was in 7th grade and it's finally happened."