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Junior right side hitter Tobi Farrar (Arlington, Texas) recently checked in with to discuss the 2011 volleyball season so far. The Cavaliers head to Athens, Ohio, for the Ohio Volleyball Tournament this weekend and begin action with a 5 p.m. match vs. Marshall on Friday (Sept. 9).

Question: The team is coming off two wins at the Holiday Inn Jefferson Cup last weekend and you were named to the all-tournament team. Can you talk about the weekend as a whole and your performance?
: Last weekend was a great experience for our team. We played very well in our first match against Eastern Carolina and got a 3-0 win. Our next match against Cal was a tough one. I was very excited to play Cal. I knew that I would have to be very efficient and be a playmaker in order for our team to win. We went into the match with a certain fire and energy. We wanted to win and knew if we were efficient and handled the ball well, that we would win. The first set was close, but Cal came out on top. I thought our performance the first set was very good, but slowly deteriorated in the next two sets. Our team has been in the gym and knows what we need to do to get better and come out on top in these matches. We did not dwell on the loss and came into the gym for our last match against Long Island ready to go. I was very happy to receive my first all-tournament recognition this past weekend.

Question: How did it feel to play the nation’s top-ranked team in Cal and keep it so close in the first set?
: We prepare the same way for every team we play. It does not matter whether they are No. 1 or dead last. Our team was very prepared for that game. Everyone knew it would be a tough match, but our mentality was that we were going to win. The first game was a great match. Our team came out on fire and we were doing the little things right. It was close in the end, but it came down to the team who was going to make the first mistake and that just happened to be us. Even though we lost the match to Cal, I think our team took a lot of good things away from that loss and we know what we need to work on.

Question: What kinds of things has the team been working on in preparation for matches against Marshall, Louisville and Ohio this weekend?
: We have been in the gym working on our ball control, defense and working on our serve and pass and sideout. Coach Maes is preparing us to win these next three matches by knowing the tendencies of the players on the opposing teams so that we all know what to expect when we play them this weekend.

Question: How is the road environment different than playing at home?
: Playing at home is a much greater feeling because you are in front of your home crowd and defending your homecourt. It is never a good thing to lose at home. Playing on the road is different only in the way that you are not at your home court and are not used to the gym you will be playing in. Our mentality about the game is the same whether we are home or away. We want to win no matter what.

Question: What are some of the team’s goals for the rest of the non-conference schedule before ACC play starts?
: Our team wants to continue getting better and work on the things that we did not do well in the tournaments we have already played in. We want to win every tournament, but we take each team at a time and focus on the first game before the others.

Question: What is your favorite sport to watch or play other than volleyball?
: My favorite sport to watch is football. My favorite NFL team is the Dallas Cowboys.

Question: What is your first volleyball memory?
: My very first volleyball memory would have to be when my friends in sixth grade told me I should start playing volleyball. I showed up to the first practice we started serving and I tossed the ball up and hit it so hard all of my friends freaked out. They were all in shock of how hard I hit it and that it went over the net.

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