• Loading KStateSports Tweets...
    1 second ago
MAIN ROSTER | SCHEDULE | STATS | CAMPS | RECRUITS | FACILITIES | TRADITION | AWARDS | PHOTOS | ARCHIVE
2014 K-State Volleyball Media Day Quotes


GO WILDCATS
GO WILDCATS

GO WILDCATS
Aug. 18, 2014

K-State head coach, Suzie Fritz
On the presence of veterans on this year’s younger team…
“There are no surprises for [fifth-year seniors]. They know exactly what they are supposed to do, where they are supposed to stand and how they are supposed to get there. It’s nice to have that balance of experience with this youthful, wonderful, fun energy that some of our younger players bring.”

On the mentality of the group of seniors…
“[Senior] Taylor Johnson talked to [former K-State catcher] Blair DeBord at one of the leadership academy meetings. He had made this statement that when [K-State baseball] won the Big 12 championship in 2013, those seniors never said, ‘This is our year.’ They never made it about themselves. I think this volleyball team is that kind of team. The seniors don’t think it is about them. It’s about ‘us.’ That’s how you want it to be.”

On this team’s leadership style…
“Different teams lead in different ways. This team is all in it. It’s a really large team with a wonderful dynamic. The seniors are not afraid to let the freshmen lead. The freshmen are not afraid to lead, and all those in between seem to understand that they are all better if they are all giving. We tell them all the time that everybody has responsibility for leadership. Some teams really take that to heart, and some don’t. Everybody on this roster feels some sense of leadership responsibility.”

On the group of nine newcomers…
“They are loose, quirky, funny, and unfocused sometimes, but they are a blast. They are wonderful learners. The really fun thing for a coach with a young team is that in two days, you make so much progress. It’s like coaching little kids. You tell them to do it like this for a couple days and get them in the right system and getting them to stand in the right place, and all of a sudden, the light comes on for them.”

On the potential of the young team…
“With these players, the sky is the limit. They are learning fast. They are embracing everything. They love everything about everything. It’s such a positive energy.”

About the confidence from the younger players…
“We are not concerned about [their confidence]. They have given us no reason to be concerned about it. I’m sure, like everything else, not having done it before creates some internal hesitation, but they have no reason to [lack confidence]. They are playing quite well. They are earning positions. They are battling in practice. The thing we keep telling them is they have to trust their training. We’ve done enough [in practice] that they will be well-prepared when the time comes.”

On Katie Brand as a leader…
“Number one, Katie Brand sets a standard for work that is unparalleled – and we have a lot of really hard workers on this team. She’s the player who shows up about an hour early for practice, and she will stay about an hour late. And you literally – and people say this all the time – have to kick her out of the gym, and say, 'Katie, no more. You don’t get to play volleyball anymore.' The fact that you get to do that with her sets the tone of here is one of your best players and seasoned veterans who just can’t get enough of it. A lot of [her leadership] is by example, although her vocal presence [this year] is much stronger than a year ago. Her confidence is starting to show. She wants to be in charge. She likes the role and the responsibility. That’s half the battle – getting someone to want to be in charge. She’s there.”

On Katie Brand’s improvement as a setter…
“From just the pure fact of putting [the ball] where it is supposed to go, she is significantly better. That first year of setting is a lot [to take on]. The window that they get to work - to put that ball in - is just like a quarterback and wide receiver relationship. The window at the collegiate level is so much tighter.”

On Chelsea Keating…
“We’ve been trying Chelsea a little bit on the left [side] and a little bit on the right. She has kind of become the boss. She understands exactly what she is supposed to do and what everybody else is supposed to do. She’s not one of those people who is in your face, but she is clearly in charge. She’s got some opportunities to not just be an attacker and a blocker. She has developed as an all-around player, playing six rotations.”

On Sheridan Zarda…
“She’s in it. She’s been a wonderful addition to our team. She’s yet another player who can provide a lift for us in the back row. She’s one of the libero candidates, putting herself in that the conversation. She’s had to make some adjustments. We’ve asked to her to do some things a little bit differently, but she has made that transition smoothly.”

On if she has ever had a team like this…
“Never. You can’t like them anymore. They make me nuts, and I couldn’t love them anymore. They are so fun to be around and coach. They love everything, and I’m not kidding. They love being here, coming to practice. They have not taken a day off. They are so hungry, eager and excited that it’s hard to not also be excited around them.”

 

Redshirt senior outside hitter, Chelsea Keating
On the group of newcomers…
“They all work really hard, but coming from high school to here is just a big jump. They adjusted pretty well. We are expecting a lot from some of our underclassmen.”

On the energy level of the newcomers…
“They have way more energy than I do. As a fifth-year, I don’t have that anymore. It’s nice, though, having somebody who is excited about stuff all the time. We didn’t have that last year. We were all older and had all experienced it before. It’s nice to have new faces and people who are excited to play volleyball.”

 

Redshirt sophomore setter, Katie Brand
On this year’s team compared to last year’s team…
“Last year we had so many seniors and so many veterans out there playing. It gets routine. It never gets boring, but it just becomes the same thing over and over – they were not as excited to go out and play as much as this year’s team is. During the Purple/White scrimmage [last Saturday], some of [the newcomers] were getting nervous, which is something new. They are just excited about the season and everything it has to offer.”

On this year’s team chemistry…
“The team chemistry this year has been the best it’s been since I have been here. Everyone gets along so well, and it’s fun.”

On her change in leadership…
“I feel like I had to step up a lot this year, especially vocally. I’ve always believed in leading by example, and I think that is still a concept that will stick with me, but this year I have to be more vocal as well.”

On her experience helping her in year two as the starting setter…
“Having one year under my belt, I know what to expect more this year. During my redshirt year, I got to watch Caitlyn Donahue [play the setter position], but it’s just a huge difference when you are actually out there.”

On working hard before and after practice…
“I stay as long as I can so that I can get the extra reps. Especially now, when we are really leading up to the season, I just want to be prepared.”

On some of the standout newcomers…
“When Bryna Vogel got here, I talked her up a lot because I think she is just going to be outstanding. Devan [Fairfield] has been doing a great job, keeping the ball alive and making plays. Kylee Zumach has been here all spring. She is one that we are going to count on quite a bit this fall. Just being an outside, she’s going to get set a lot, especially in bad situations, and so far, she has been doing great with that.”

On Chelsea Keating…
“She has grown a lot as a vocal leader. She has definitely taken the lead of being the one who brings down the hammer when things are not going as well as they should be going. This team doesn’t have a problem with working hard, but if she does need to put somebody in line, she does and that’s a huge role to fill.”

On being named to the Big 12 Preseason Team…
“I think it’s a nice honor, but it’s more about what happens at the end of the season and where our team gets.”