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Sarasota Athlete of the Week: Ella Pfeil

The Riverview volleyball junior talks changing positions and her dream superpower.

Ella Pfeil.
Ella Pfeil.
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Ella Pfeil is a junior on the Riverview High volleyball team. Pfeil had 14 kills on Oct. 15 in the Rams' 3-0 district semifinal win against North Port High. 

When did you start playing volleyball?

In sixth grade, so six years ago. My sister (Grace Pfeil) played, so I wanted to play, too. I play both indoor and beach volleyball now. 

What is the appeal to you?

I like how it's completely a team sport and how games can go at different paces depending on the night. 

What is your best skill?

I guess my hitting. Getting a kill is exciting, especially when there is a big crowd and everyone is cheering for you. When you do your job and the team comes together to celebrate, that is the best feeling. 

What is your favorite memory?

My freshman year, I was playing with Kayla Walker and Riah Walker. Riah got this pancake dig, Kayla set a ball for me and then I got a kill. All three of us contributed on a great play and we were all best friends then. It was insane. 

What has been your biggest challenge?

Coming in as a freshman and being asked to change positions. I played outside hitter my whole career before then, but Nickie (Halbert, head coach) wanted me on the right side. It is a totally different approach and different set-ups for your blocks. It took about half a year for me to get comfortable with it, but it was not until this season that I fully 'got it.' I actually think I am better on the right side than I am at outside now. 

What is your favorite food?

Tacos. Ground beef, lettuce, tomato, sour cream, taco sauce and cheese. Pretty basic tacos. 

What is your favorite TV show?

'One Tree Hill.' I watched it with my sister when we were younger and I still watch it.

What is your dream vacation spot?

Fiji. I like tropical places. I've seen pictures of Fiji, and it seems so pretty. 

Which superpower would you pick?

To breathe underwater. I just like the ocean. I'd be, like, a mermaid, if that counts as a superpower. 

What is the best advice you have received?

Never give up. Always work your hardest in what you are doing. 

Finish this sentence: "Ella Pfeil is … "

… Outgoing. That's what my teammates tell me. Well, they tell me I'm crazy, but outgoing, too. I'm just not afraid to talk to people. I get excited and dance on the court and do stupid stuff. 



Ryan Kohn

Ryan Kohn is the sports editor for Sarasota and East County and a Missouri School of Journalism graduate. He was born and raised in Olney, Maryland. His biggest inspirations are Wright Thompson and Alex Ovechkin. His strongest belief is that mint chip ice cream is unbeatable.

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