Village News Reporter
Manava Pedro, who concluded four years of varsity boys volleyball for Fallbrook High School this spring, will continue his scholastic volleyball career at Ottawa University in Arizona.
"I'm just really excited to play for them," Pedro said. "I just want to go there and play better, get some experience, make some friends there, and just have fun playing some top teams."
Ottawa University is in the Phoenix suburb of Surprise. The Spirit play in the Golden State Athletic Conference. The 2023 men's volleyball team had a 5-5 GSAC record which shared third place in the standings, and Ottawa's 16-8 overall mark reflects a 1-1 record in the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics tournament.
Pedro was also considering Simpson University, which is in Redding, before choosing Ottawa University. "I liked the area more," he said.
"After visiting I really loved it," Pedro said. "I really liked the coaches. I got along with them really well."
Both of Pedro's parents are volleyball coaches. His father, Chip Patterson, is Fallbrook High School's boys and girls head volleyball coach. Boys volleyball was not a high school sport when Patterson attended Lake Clifton High School in Baltimore, Maryland. He was a three-sport athlete for the Lakers, playing quarterback on the football team, forward on the basketball team, and pitcher, catcher, and first baseman on the baseball team.
Patterson spent 27 years in the United States Marine Corps, which brought him to San Diego County and which also initiated his volleyball playing career. He began his coaching career as a player/assistant coach and became a player/head coach before transitioning to a coach-only role. His Marine Corps coaching activity included leading a base travel team.
Patterson was an assistant coach for Fallbrook High School's girls team in 2013 before taking over as head coach in 2014, and he has been the boys head coach since 2014.
"I'm proud of him signing," Patterson said of Pedro.
"It's going to be great for him," Patterson said. "This is one of the only programs where the volleyball team has a whole dedicated locker room."
Pedro's mother, Leilani Pedro, is a 1989 El Camino High School graduate. She played volleyball for the Wildcats and then played at Palomar Community College. She is currently a Fallbrook High School assistant volleyball coach.
"My parents have been coaching high school for a long time, so when I was younger, I would practice with the high school team," Pedro said.
Pedro is the youngest of six children. His brother Justice Patterson played for Fallbrook High School before graduating in 2017 and subsequently played for Menlo College and for Park University in Arizona.
The family moved from Oceanside to Fallbrook when Pedro was 3 years old. He attended St. Peter the Apostle Catholic School from kindergarten through eighth grade. Pedro was 11 when he began playing club volleyball.
The coronavirus outbreak limited Fallbrook's 2020 season to 11 matches although Pedro was on the Warriors' varsity as a freshman. As a sophomore, the Valley League coaches placed Pedro on the all-league first team, and Pedro was also a Valley League first team selection in 2022 and 2023.
Pedro was primarily a setter and played outside hitter at times both in 2021 and in 2022, and in 2023 he was primarily an outside hitter who also played setter. During the club season Pedro played for the SD Beach Club which is based in Vista.
In his youth Pedro also played rugby, baseball, and basketball although he played no sports other than volleyball at Fallbrook High School.
His favorite high school volleyball memories were when teams other than the Warriors were playing. "Every year we went to watch a college volleyball game," he said.
Having lunch, talking, and otherwise being with his friends is Pedro's favorite overall Fallbrook High School memory.
Ottawa University has an Exercise Science major, and Pedro is leaning towards that academic focus in college.