Next Level Watch: Emily Rottman playing pro volleyball in Sweden

Emily Rottman played on the 2008 CIF Championship team at Santa Barbara High.

Emily Rottman played on the 2008 CIF Championship team at Santa Barbara High.

Former Santa Barbara High star Emily Rottman is off to Sweden to play professional volleyball.

Rottman signed a one-year contract with a team in the city of Orebro. The team plays in Sweden’s top division, known as the Elitserien.

Rottman was a junior on the Santa Barbara team that captured the 2008 CIF 1A Division title. She earned All-CIF first-team honors and was named an All-American by prepvolleyball.com in her senior year.

She received a scholarship to Virginia, where she started every match in her four years in Charlottesville. She played both libero and outside hitter. She finished as the No. 3 all-time leader in digs in program history with 1,770. She served as the team captain during her last two years.

Rottman will play at outside hitter for Orebro.

Her two younger sisters also are volleyball standouts. Danielle is a junior outside hitter at Santa Clara University and Alexis is a senior setter for Santa Barbara High.

PONTIUS BACK ON FIELD

Former UCSB soccer star Chris Pontius will be back in uniform for DC United after missing 4 1/2 months with a hamstring ailment. He’s been plagued with hamstring issues since his days as a Gaucho.

Pontius has undergone two surgeries and months of rehab in his long road back. In the meantime, another Gaucho has played a huge part in United’s success this season — it leads the Eastern Division in Major League Soccer. Luis Silva has scored eight goals and added three assists.

Pontius, 27, is United’s longest-serving player. He told the Washington Post that he’s “comfortable stepping into a game now. That was the main thing with the recovery – not to push it and make sure I am comfortable changing and affecting the game. I think I am at that point.”

DC United coach Ben Olsen said he plans to take things slow with Pontius.

“It’s important we’re smart the way we go about him now,” he told the Washington Post. “It’s been a while. We’ve got to be very, very smart with what games he goes into, what position and how long.”

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