| March 18, 2018

Volleyball: Transfer Clarity

May 5, 2016

Idaho transfers Klaree Hobart and Haylee Mathis have provided a strong boost for the Vandal volleyball program after joining the program this winter.

Earlier this spring, the Vandals squared off against Washington State, the team Mathis redshirted with last season before transferring to Idaho in January.

Before joining the Cougars, Mathis was a two-time National Trial Conference MVP honoree and led St. Anthony High School to four NTC Championships.

The Strausburg, Illinois native said the transferring process has been comforting.

“Everyone on this team has been welcoming,” Mathis said. “The coaches cater to each player’s gifts and talents. They know how to coach me a certain way that’ll benefit me so it was easy to come here.”

Hobart, originally from Lewiston, said her transition has provided benefits at a personal level. She said she has adapted to a different playing style since joining the Vandals.

“It has been a really smooth transition for me personally,” Hobart said. “And with there only being nine girls right now, it’s easy to get one-on-one attention.”

Hobart said she has made adjustments regarding her position.

“We only have two defensive specialists and one setter,” she said. “With the low numbers, it’s easy for everybody to get leaps and bounce better. Especially that I used to be an outside hitter and now that I’m just playing defense, life’s been great.”

Hobart played for Blue Mountain Community College the past two seasons and led the team to back-to-back Northwest Athletic Conference Championships.

Hobart totaled 179 kills for the Timberwolves, averaging 2.59 per set. She was also a First Team East Region member and First Team All-American in 2014.

Mathis said playing as a setter for the Vandals has provided an initial challenge.

“Sometimes as the only setter it gets overwhelming,” Mathis said. “I know there’s a setter that can’t come in and help run the offense.”

Mathis said despite a thin roster, the team has been able to grow individually.

“We’ve been doing really well with our small numbers we have,” Mathis said. “People have been improving a lot this spring and it’s really exciting to watch.”

Hobart said transferring to a different school has tested her mentality as an athlete, but that she is excited about her new team.

“My mental game has been great. I’m happier and more positive,” Hobart said. “My energy is ten times better because I don’t like the negativity personally.”

Mathis said transferring from Washington State has allowed her to find her love for the sport.

“I am more in love with volleyball than I’ve ever been in a long time,” Mathis said. “At my previous university I was only a setter but potentially I could be a hitter. We’ll have to see how things turn out with how many hitters come in the offense and the new setter.”

Hobart said the team is more approachable on learning from mistakes.

“I’m just very relaxed here,” Hobart said. “I feel like my team is very laid back with how they are when we made mistakes. It has made me really calm towards my passing on the platform because I’m never uptight when I play.”

In addition to the two transfers, the Vandals recruited five incoming freshmen to join the roster this fall.

Luis Torres can be reached at arg-sports@uidaho.edu or on Twitter @TheLTFiles

Related Posts
No comments

There are currently no comments to show.