Freshman Mata Ready for Varsity Volleyball


Special to the PRESS

Layli Mata. Photo by Larry Gage.

Not many freshmen get moved up to Varsity at the very start of the high school volleyball season. Layli Mata is one of the few to get the nod since Julie Breedlove took the Port Isabel head coaching job.

“I needed a setter, number one,” Breed-love said this week. “She was the setter last year for our eighth grade team and Layli’s a hustler. She gets after it. She does everything we ask her to do, and she’s a hard worker.”

“I was surprised,” Mata told the Press. “The decision was made after a couple of practices.”

“I figured if I’m going to have to bring one up, I might as well start her as a freshman,” Breedlove said. “Then I’ll have her all four years.”

Mata talked about the intricacies of the setter position and how it’s played.

“Once I call the ball for the second hit (set) I have to say a number, either four, two, or five, and it tells the person in that position to get ready to hit.”

“You have to make sure that you know exactly where you’re hitting the ball. Some-times you can over-push it, or it hits your fingers the wrong way, so it’s just a matter of staying under the ball.”

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