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Pooler Magazine

Tatiyana Modicue

It’s Game Time

Story by Katrice Williams • Photos by Shelia Scott

Lloy Ball, U.S. Volleyball Hall-of-Famer and Olympic Gold Medalist, once stated: “The will to win is more important than the skill to win … I think, therefore I am. Keep your head high and work hard every day, because you’ll never get that day back.” That is the way that Tatiyana Modicue, a West Chatham Middle School (WCMS) seventh-grader, has felt for quite some time. She lives in the local area along with her mom Fabyolla, dad Alex, brother Jacquez, 19, and sister Makayla, 10. Tatiyana will soon begin her second volleyball season with the WCMS Wildcats. She has displayed outstanding levels of athleticism for quite a while, especially in the sport of volleyball. This young lady’s work ethic, drive and determination are truly impressive.

The Taste of Victory

Tatiyana loves the game of volleyball and has been playing for over three years. Prior to volleyball, she was active in the sport of cheerleading--competitive cheerleading to be exact. In fact, Tatiyana traveled to various regions, including parts of Florida and Tennessee, to compete against other squads. Even then, Tatiyana loved the taste of victory, and that taste has stayed with her ever since.

“For the longest, I [did] competitive cheer; I went all over. I wanted to try something new, so I tried volleyball out and really liked it; I really liked the intensity,” she stated.

Tatiyana has really grown in the sport over the years. The young athlete feels her biggest strengths are currently “setting (preparing the ball for a hit) and hitting” the ball. She is extremely grateful for the leadership and expertise of her volleyball coach, Curtis Boyer, who is beginning his third year at WCMS. Further, the young lady knows that she has tremendously grown as an athlete under Coach Boyer’s leadership. Boyer is proud that Tatiyana has excelled and is looking forward to seeing how she continues to develop as a strong leader.

“Hopefully, she’ll see the growth from 6th grade. Her work ethic is probably one of the best out there. I feel that she can take charge and become a leader,” he said.

Tatiyana understands that last year’s team was a very experienced one, as most of the players came back from previous years. The Wildcats were “undefeated in the regular season and lost in the finals” by only two points–the end result of hard work and playing their hearts out throughout the season. Coach Boyer, however, feels good to coach a somewhat “fresh set of players” this year with an all new team dynamic and “culture” that will be established. He would like to “coach the team to a win,” when it’s all said and done.

Tatiyana is excited for a great season, one that will utterly reflect the entire team’s hard work and diligence. Though the team barely missed the playoffs last year, she is looking forward to a victorious finish this year.

“I want to make the playoffs…go to the championship,” she said.

Always Practicing

Like any successful athlete, Tatiyana knows that the only way for any competitor to perform at high levels is to practice hard and well. She knows that harder practices equal easier victories. Besides regular after-school practices, Tatiyana has all her own equipment at home where she thoroughly enjoys practicing as much as possible, both in and out of season.

“Whether with friends or family, I always play volleyball … get some practice in,” she stated.

Tatiyana knows that teamwork certainly makes the dream work and feels that each player has their very own valuable talents to contribute. She is very proud to play alongside the other Wildcats, all wanting to be the best players that they can be and, obviously, have a winning season where the totality of their skill and hard work is reflected.

“It’s like a sisterhood; they’re supportive, and we boost (each other’s] confidence up,” she remarked.

Stellar Student

More importantly, Tatiyana is committed to being a stellar student, so her academics are very important to her and one of her biggest priorities. Actually, she can definitely see herself in a math-oriented career when she grows up, since it is her favorite subject. Moreover, she, too, would like to continue to play volleyball on the collegiate level.

Besides volleyball, Tatiyana loves to spend time with her family. She also likes to dance, sing and cheer in her spare moments. As a matter of fact, she cheers for her dad’s traveling football team, the Southeast Bulldawgs (6U to 12U age groups).

Interestingly enough, Tatiyana’s mom was skilled in volleyball along with track and field. Her dad, who is the New Hampstead High School Football Coach, was a proficient football athlete. It is obvious that athleticism is a big part of Tatiyana’s DNA.

Tatiyana is thankful for all the wonderful support of her entire family, especially her mom and dad, two of her greatest role-models. She feels that her dad’s discipline, structure and guidance throughout her life have helped to shape her into the person that she is today; she also appreciates her mom’s unwavering support.

“She’s always there for me. I can talk to her about anything,” she said. In addition, Tatiyana mentions one of her biggest mentors, her godmom Tiita Barmore, who has also been very supportive over the years whether providing a helping hand or even being a knowledgeable “tutor.”

“She helps me with a lot of things,” Tatiyana remarked.

There is no limit to where Tatiyana Modicue will go. One thing is for sure … the best is yet to come for such an exceptional young lady. She has some truly worthwhile advice for other young people: “Try your best; work hard. Follow your heart; follow your passion.”