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A Hall of Famer’s Perspective on How to Play Better Beach Volleyball

By Don Patterson, The Art of Coaching Volleyball, 01/18/19, 12:00PM CST

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Taking a quick look at the opposing defender before hitting allows you to make a better decision about where to put the ball, but you don’t want to look too early. 

I used to think Angela Rock was taller. That was before I met her. We both went to San Diego State years ago, and I’d seen her picture in The Daily Aztec, high over the net, towering, ripping volleyballs, playing her way to two final fours, first team All-American honors and, eventually, induction into the school’s Hall of Fame.

But Angela is only 5-foot-8 – undersized by volleyball standards, especially in today’s game. The first time I interviewed her face to face, I realized it was her springy hop that gave her an elevated presence on the sports pages. That hop, combined with her elite athleticism and strong work ethic, served her well for a long time.