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Like father, like daughter

In the game of volleyball the setter is often considered the position that could make or break a team and for the Palomar women’s volleyball that spark plug in the center is Mikayla Seiler.

Coming from a family of volleyball players Seiler naturally picked up the sport herself following in the footsteps of her father and coach, Karl Seiler. Mikayla mentioned, “Both of my parents and coached so it’s kind of in the family.”

Coach Seiler is a longtime Comet himself attending the school and then worked as an assistant coach starting in 1990. The Palomar alumni took over the women’s team in 1995 and has been coaching ever since.

Palomar Comet’s player Mikayla Seiler, #2, during the game vs San Bernadino Valley at the Dome on Friday, October 5th, 2018. Aubree Wiedmaier/ The Telescope

Seiler joked he’s been Mikayla’s lifelong coach but officially has been her volleyball coach for the two years she’s been at the school.

“I wanted her to get her own experience with another coach until she graduated high school, “ Seiler said, “ then I said you can come play with me, which she didn’t’ really like at the beginning.”
Having a dad as your coach can have its perks as one can imagine. Mikayla said, “ I can be a little sassier with my coach so that’s kind of funny.” She also mentioned it has been a fun experience to see the coaching side of her father.

Like anything new, there is a learning curve and for this father-daughter duo, they have found that keeping the volleyball talk separate from home life has been the key to keeping everyone happy.
“She’s super stubborn,” Seiler said in regards to some of the harder aspects of coaching Mikayla, but the proud father couldn’t help but add, “ She’s super smart so it’s hard for me to catch her.”

Mikayla agrees that being able to separate volleyball from family time has helped maintain their relationship. With a long commute, the pair has found that their car ride to and from school is time to bond.

Seiler describes Mikayla as headstrong which poses challenges for the coaching side but he enjoys watching her grow as a student of the game.“She’s very accepting of coaching and she really wants to be as good as you can be in whatever she doing.”

In their two years together at Palomar, the pair has fallen into a rhythm keeping a balance of father and daughter, coach and player. “She’ll ask me a question and I’ll say do you want me to answer as coach or as dad?”

As a clear leader on the court, Mikayla shows her veteran status playing hard through every set always cheering on her fellow teammates and It shows she looks up to her father picking up the position as a setter just as he once was. Like any proud father and coach Seiler can’t help but beam when talking about Mikayla. It’s a father-daughter bond that will never be broken.

Image Sources

  • Women’s Volleyball 10/5/18: The Telescope Newspaper | All Rights Reserved
  • Mikayla Seiler Feature: Aubree Wiedmaier/The Telescope | All Rights Reserved
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