Another Lott emerges; she’s a hard hitter, too
By: JOHN REID Daily News Staff Writer
Posted October 31
Christmas time for the Lott family is like many households all over the world.
“During Christmas, we always get up early,” said Saint Francis-Mountain View senior outside hitter Chloe Lott, daughter of Pro Football Hall of Famer Ronnie Lott. “Sometimes, we’d get up as early as 4 or 5 a.m. to open up presents, we are so eager. My mom bakes monkey bread. It’s a kind of cinnamon bread.”
Chloe Lott has been the Lancers’ bread-and-butter this season, registering 328 kills and 261 digs in 31 matches. At 5-foot-8, there may not be a better all-around volleyball player in the Central Coast Section, inch for inch. Though Lott has never had her vertical leap measured, her forte is rising around 3 feet off the ground, reading the block, then sending a rocket to the other side of the net.
“Chloe has the ability to hit the ball with incredible force,” Saint Francis girls volleyball coach Leahi Hall Leon said. “You can’t teach a kid how to put so much velocity on the ball. With her, size doesn’t matter. I don’t think of her as a small volleyball player. I think of her as a point-scorer.”
Lott is cat-quick on the floor, making her valuable in the back row.
“Chloe is our primary passer and service-receiver,” Hall Leon said. “She’s our best digger. She has a huge effect on our offense.”
Lott had 15 kills in the Lancers’ 3-1 loss to nationally ranked Mitty-San Jose last week, committing only two errors in 46 attempts, while going against the taller Monarchs. Saint Francis may have to face the Monarchs three more times this year— in next week’s West Catholic Athletic League tournament, in the CCS Div. II playoffs and in the Div. II Nor Cal playoffs, should the Lancers reach the section title match.
“We can beat anyone,” Lott said. “We’re not doing our best, but each game is a new challenge and experience. We have to keep fighting every game. We have the ability to play strong, but we don’t always start that way. We need to start each match stronger.”
Lott showed strength in the Lancers’ five-set win over Menlo School-Atherton with 23 kills and 19 digs on Sept. 6. One week later, Lott amassed 25 kills and 18 digs in a win over Homestead-Cupertino. Two days after that in the Mitty Invitational, she shined with 20 kills, hitting for a .429 percentage in a 3-1 defeat to Santa Margarita, a Southern California power.
Last weekend, Lott had 75 kills in four matches at the Santa Barbara Tournament of Champions, including a 24-kill effort against Mira Costa.
Though Lott is racking up impressive tangible numbers, it’s her intangible contributions as a team leader that have drawn praise from Hall Leon.
“Chloe has been a positive influence on the team, not only as kill leader, but in bringing leadership and confidence to the court,” Hall Leon said.
“I try to encourage teammates, get them excited for games and ready to play,” Lott said. “It’s important for me to play a role as a leader. ” Lott chose to attend Saint Francis instead of Monta Vista-Cupertino, a public school.
“My brother and sister went to Saint Francis, so I wanted to come here,” Lott said.
Lott’s older sister, Hailey, did track and field and was a cheerleader at Saint Francis. Older brother, Isaiah, who played football for the Lancers, is studying business at Northern Illinois University.
Lott’s father, Ronnie, played 15 seasons as a safety and cornerback in the NFL, including 10 seasons with the San Francisco 49ers where he was part of four Super Bowl title teams.
“My dad is different than most dads because he’s the best dad,” Chloe Lott said. “He’s very humble. I didn’t feel our family was different than any others when I was growing up. It’s easy being his daughter, but some things are harder than others. He was tough on me, but it was for the best.”
Lott said her father has influenced the way she plays on the court. Like father, like daughter.
“I get frustrated in volleyball when I make a couple of mistakes,” Lott said. “My dad always taught me that I can’t do anything about it. You have to focus on the next one. I’m a competitor. I don’t like to lose.”
Lott aspires to play volleyball in college, but she isn’t the prototypical 6-4 outside hitter that most colleges send onto the floor on a regular basis.
“Chloe sees a lot of double blocks and she has learned how to deal with them,” Hall Leon said. “She uses blocks to her advantage. That’s what hitters do at the next level. She can play Div. I volleyball with the right team, one that emphasizes speed. She has the speed and athleticism to make up for her lack of size.”
“I don’t care where I play,” Lott said. “I like playing right side and like playing in the back row. I’ll play defensive specialist. I like hitting the ball. It’s what I do best.”
That is a given from this Lancer Lott.