Kostadinova Proves her Worth

It’s a good thing the World Wide Web is around. Otherwise, the Florida A&M volleyball team might not have its star middle blocker Adriana Kostadinova.

“I heard about the school from the Internet,” said Kostadinova. “My coach from Bulgaria also helped me learn some, but it was initially through the Internet.”

Originally from Sofia, Bulgaria, the sophomore middle blocker started playing volleyball at eight-years-old. Because she was always one of the taller girls at home, Kostadinova started at that position.

“This year the middle blocking is a lot better than last year,” said Kostadinova. “We’re able to do more combinations that gives us more opportunities.”

Last year the team went 23-7. They were conference champions but were defeated by Georgia Tech, which prevented a trip to the NCAA tournament. Passive

Kostadinova led the team in the conference championship match with, a match-high, 16 kills. She was also named Most Outstanding Performer of the tournament and a member of the All-Tournament Team.

“She [Adriana] is very supportive,” said teammate senior Ursula Jara. “She’s always very positive and very challenging.”

The Lady Rattlers have a 3-3 record so far this season and Kostadinova has played an integral part in all matches.

In the season opener, an Aug. 29-31 tournament at Colorado State University, the 6-3 Bulgarian contributed 13 kills. In last weekend’s Hilton Volleyball Classic at the University of Florida, Kostadinova paced the team in the 3-0 victory over Xavier with 12 kills for a .357 hitting percentage. She also had 13 kills in the 0-3 loss to No. 3 Florida.

Kostadinova received MEAC Player of the Week honors for her recent performances.

“We were all excited before the game but we didn’t play our game,” said Kostadinova about the UF game.

Playing with a new number – 3 – Kostadinova is ready for conference action to begin. Conference play starts Tuesday, with a home match against rival Bethune-Cookman College.

“We are looking forward to playing in the MEAC,” said Jara. “We’re thinking about the nationals more than the MEAC because we know we can win it.” Who said this?

Kostadinova agrees with Jara.

“We want to do more than what we have.”

Dominique Drake can be reached at ddidis1@aol.com