The Bronco volleyball squad looked to young talent last year to contribute and Taylor Milton took on that responsibility. With a year on the Mission campus under her belt, Milton is committed to raising her level of play and helping the Broncos compete day in and day out.
SCU: How was your first season at Santa Clara? What are the major differences between playing in the West Coast Conference and playing in high school?
TM: We had a tough season in 2011 but it was a good experience, learning and adjusting to play at a college level game. The WCC is a much faster pace and higher game than high school because in high school you would commonly come across average or poorly skilled teams but in the WCC almost all the teams are equal or better.
SCU: How did your success in high school get you ready to be a contributor your freshman year?
TM: Playing on a nationally-ranked club team and a dominant high school team allowed me to consistently play at a high level against great players and teams, which helped me develop into a stronger player.
SCU: What improvements are you trying to make this offseason?
TM: During this offseason I really want to improve my speed and strength along with my blocking and jump serves.
SCU: How are the new coaches helping you make those improvements?
TM: Matt has been helping me a ton with my serve receive, passing, and defense. He also has started training with us on the sand. Brad has come in and made great strides in helping with our program. He has been really helpful with my hitting since we have a whole new speed system we're running. Ryan Leake, our new trainer, has been helping a ton with regaining all my speed and strength while keeping all the workouts fun yet challenging.
SCU: What are some personal goals you would like to achieve this upcoming season?
TM: I would love to come into this next season and help my team finish in the top of our conference and hopefully make it to the tournament. Personally, I want to be able to help take on a leading role, making an impact with my strengths. I also want to be good at siding out and using my jump serve consistently.
SCU: Being from San Diego, did you ever play beach volleyball? How has playing on the beach helped your indoor game?
TM: Yes, I have trained and played beach volleyball for about four years now. I trained with the USA beach team in LA and the Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista over the past two summers. I have also played in plenty of local tournaments and pick up games during summer. Playing beach helps a ton with my ball control and strength.
SCU: What is the one thing you miss the most about Southern California?
TM: I miss the beaches and warm weather from back home the most, as well as my momma's cooking.