ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – For Eckerd College beach volleyball junior Payton Meader, confidence and team chemistry are the ways she and her team have found success.
The team is currently 5-1and on an offensive spurt to start the season. Meader who provides a veteran presence to the team was adamant about the connections within the group she plays with.
“I think our connection as a team is really incredible,” she said. “We gel really well as a group, our communication is very good we spend a lot of time with each other outside of volleyball, too. That helps the connection further in how we play and how we work.”
Meader prides herself on her defensive presence on the court. She attended Waverly high school in Waverly, Kan., where she set the record for the most blocks in a game. In her freshman year at Eckerd she was second on the team in blocks with 72 (11 solo).
“One of my favourite things is defence. It feels nice to shut the other person down,” she said.
She has come along way since her freshman year, taking on a leadership role this season.
“She is just so experienced, and she has so much wisdom,” freshman Cortina Green said of Meader.“ I call her Momma Bear because if I ever need something, struggling emotionally, or have a question because I am still new, I always turn to Payton.”
“Personally,” Meader said, “I really try and show that I am the one that cares the most about the girls and our connection as a team. Being one of the leaders on the team, I focus on not only working hard, but also having fun.
“At the end of the day we are here to have fun because we love this sport.”