Caylie Seitz, a junior outside hitter on the Sonoma State volleyball team was named California Collegiate Athletic Association Player of the Week for the week of Sept. 22 through the 28.
In that week, Seitz helped her team in defeating nationally ranked UC San Diego in just four sets and Cal Poly Pomona in three. In those two games alone, she had 35 kills. Seitz currently leads the CCAA in kills per set and kills in the season. She is sixth in all of division II in kills per set.
Since Seitz was a freshman at Sonoma State, she’s continually a standout on the court. As a freshman, Seitz was second on the team in kills with 348 in the season and 3.14 kills per set. This was also the second highest in school history for a freshman. She was named Second Team All CCAA.
In her sophomore season, Seitz was named Most Valuable Player of the conference and First Team All American, leading her team with 443 kills in the season and 4.03 kills per set. She was a vital aspect in helping the team go 26-6 in their season and making it to the second round of the NCAA playoffs.
Although she was seen as a great player in her first two years as a Seawolf, Seitz wasn’t willing to settle. In order to improve her game in the off-season, she started going to Crossfit in order to get stronger and increase her vertical.
“I set the bar last season really high for myself so I had to do something to be able to get close to the records I set for myself,” Seitz said.
So far, her off-season work seems to be paying off. In the 13 games they have played this season, Seitz is leading the team with an average of 4.68 kills per set.
“She is so physically dominant. It is incredible, really,” said Bear Grassl, head coach of the Sonoma State Volleyball team. “She has true strength and power like no one I have ever seen.”
With natural athleticism and strength paired with an extremely good work ethic, Seitz is hard to stop.
“My career highlight is breaking the kill record in a four set match and setting it now at 29 kills,” Seitz said.
As outside hitter, she is in a position that is usually high volume making it difficult to have a high hitting percentage. In the last five games, Seitz has been hitting over .400.
“What she is doing is comparable to having an offensive lineman in football lead the team in rushing yards,” Grassl said. “It just does not happen.”
Even though her stats are impressive on their own, Seitz’s work ethic and attitude are what really set her apart.
“Caylie is definitely a quiet leader on the court but she leads us by always working her hardest and that alone makes everyone else work harder,” said Calan Seitz, Caylie’s younger sister and a freshman setter on the SSU Volleyball team. “Seeing how far [Caylie] has come and how much she has accomplished encourages me to push myself and work as hard as she does everyday.”
When watching the team play, it’s clear that Seitz leads the team with her hard work and her attitude. You can consistently see Seitz yelling and cheering as the team does something good, and bringing them all together when they fall short.
“My goal as an individual is to just be a positive influence on and off the court,” Seitz said.
With her constant improvement, her undeniable work ethic and her positive attitude, Seitz will continue to lead the Seawolves as they head into the second half of their season.
“This is just what she likes to do. She likes to be good,” said Grassl. “We do not even have to talk about it.”
Although she has had some amazing achievements already, Seitz is not slowing down any time soon. She has recently added another achievement to her list. On Friday night, in a four set match against Cal State Monterey Bay, Caylie joined her teammate, Kelsey Hull, as the seventh member of the 1,000 kill-club. By the end of the weekend, she was at 1,025 career kills, and the number keeps climbing.
“She has been excellent,” Grassl said to sum up Seitz’s play.
Seitz, and the rest of the Seawolves, will try to extend their record to 10-4 overall, while hosting Cal State Stanislaus on Friday at 7 p.m.