For senior setter Ting Liu, volleyball has been her life. Since the age of eight, she has been playing volleyball. Originally from Beijing, China, Liu started playing when a coach asked her in elementary school if she wanted to start playing volleyball, so she joined an after school team that met five days a week.
In 2006, Liu came to ESU at age 20 after she contacted an assistant coach at the time to see if she could play in America.
“(I came to America) so I could study English and play at the college level,” Ting said. “We play so many more games, and we have home games (where) we get so much support from the fans. I like that part.”
Head Coach Bing Xu also agreed there is a difference from playing in China compared to America.
“(Her) first year she had to adjust a little bit,” Xu said. “(Playing) in China is a big difference… She learned how to play the volleyball here, and now she is very successful.”
Ever since then, Liu has been an important addition to the team. This season alone she has earned the MIAA Specialist of the Week honor in three consecutive weeks.
“That’s her honor as well as the teams,” Xu said. “With good ball control, all hitters start there, then you get a lot of assists. That’s all teamwork there.”
Liu’s teammate, senior Katelyn Kaiser, praised her abilities on the court.
“It’s amazing, if you watch she looks at where the blockers are, and then places the ball,” Kaiser said. “She has great hands. She can place the ball anywhere, even if it’s a bad pass.”
To Liu, this is just progression toward her team’s goals as well as her personal goals.
“I feel better [about making] the team goals and my goal. Our team goal is nationals and my personal goal is to be All-American again,” said Liu who earned an All-American selection her sophomore year.
At 6 feet 1 inch, Liu is very noticeable on the court, both in stature and knowledge of the game.
“Lots of setters are short, that is her big advantage,” Xu said. “A lot of setters you have to tell where to place the ball.”
Since a young age Liu has always been playing volleyball, and despite constantly playing, she has always fostered a love for the game.