Florida Gulf Coast
9/7/2012 | Toledo, OH | Attendance: 73
|Florida Gulf Coast||22||12||24||
|Stats at a Glance||FGCU||ILS|
TOLEDO, Ohio – Sophomore Gigi Meyer (Gainesville, Fla./Buchholz HS) registered her second double-double of the season with 14 assists and 11 digs, as the Florida Gulf Coast University volleyball team fell to Illinois State, 3-0 (25-22, 25-12, 26-24), in the first match of the Toledo Rocket Classic on Friday night.
“We made progress tonight,” said head coach Dave Nichols. “Our serve/receive, which is critical, is starting to improve. We were able to fight back and make adjustments in the end, but we are still having breakdowns under pressure. Hopefully we continue to fix that so we can become a tougher team.”
Meyer led the Eagles (4-4) in assists (14) and digs (11), while junior Kaitlin Holm (Fort Myers, Fla./Fort Myers HS/Marshall) picked up seven kills and four blocks. Sophomore Jill Hopper (Muncie, Ind./Yorktown HS) finished with six kills and 10 digs and classmate Olivia Mesner (Boca Raton, Fla./Spanish River HS) added five kills, five digs and four blocks.
FGCU was off to a strong start in the first set taking a 3-1 lead, thanks to kills from Holm, Hopper and senior Brooke Kohler (Jupiter, Fla./Jupiter HS/Clemson), but Illinois State (4-4) was able to tie the set at 4-4. Knotted at 11-11, Hopper served up back-to-back service aces to give the Eagles a 13-11 advantage. The Redbirds responded with a 10-3 run to take a 21-16 lead. After a timeout, FGCU employed a 6-3 spurt to cut the Illinois State lead to 24-22, but the LeighAnn Hranka blasted a kill to give the Redbirds the set (25-22).
Illinois State opened the second set with a 10-5 run and went on to extend their lead to 18-11 after a kill from Emily Schneider. Senior Brittany Muse (Arcadia, Fla./DeSoto County HS) recorded a kill to pull the Green and Blue within six points (18-12), but ISU went on a 7-0 run to capture the set 25-12 and take a 2-0 lead in the match.
Tied at 6-6 in the third game, the Eagles used a 10-4 run, highlighted a trio of kills from junior Karina Mambuca (Naples, Fla./Gulf Coast HS/Southeastern), to take a 16-10 advantage. Illinois State did not go away quietly as they pressed and managed to tie the set at 24-24, forcing extra points and a FGCU timeout. ISU went on to take the set (26-24) and the match (3-0) after a kill from Hranka and an Eagle attack error.
The Eagles complete play at the Rocket Classic with a pair of matches on Saturday. They will take on Memphis (1-7) at 10 a.m. and wrap up the tournament against tournament host Toledo (3-4) at 7:30 p.m. Live stats for both matches can be found at UTRockets.com. Live video for the FGCU’s matchup with the Rockets will be available, at a minimal cost, via Rocket Vision.