Volleyball Falls at USF, 3-1
Tuesday, September 18, 2012 | by Mike Hill (@mike_hill84)
Photo Credit: Ron Irby
Photo Credit: Ron Irby
Florida Gulf Coast (4-7)
USF (8-5)
9/18/2012 | Tampa, Fla. | Attendance: 412
Florida Gulf Coast14212516 --
USF25251725 --
Stats at a GlanceFGCUUSF
Hitting Pct..098.179
Total Attacks132151
Statistical LeadersFGCUUSF
KillsMAMBUCA - 8
Erin Fairs - 11
AssistsMEYER - 16
Wylie Devlin - 27
AcesMEYER - 2
Wylie Devlin - 3
DigsHOPPER - 13
Claudia Cabrera - 18
BlocksMESNER - 1
HOLM - 1
MUSE - 1
Rodriguez Gomez - 4
Caitlyn Breen - 4
El Houssine - 4

TAMPA, Fla. - The Florida Gulf Coast University volleyball team fell to in-state foe USF, 3-1 (14-25, 21-25, 25-17, 16-25), Tuesday night at The Corral. The Green and Blue fall to 4-7 overall on the season, while the Bulls improve to 8-5 overall.

Junior Karina Mambuca (Naples, Fla./Gulf Coast HS/Southeastern) led the Eagles with a team-high eight kills to go with five digs. Sophomore Jill Hopper (Muncie, Ind./Yorktown HS) registered seven kills and a team-high 13 digs, while junior Kaitlin Holm (Fort Myers, Fla./Fort Myers HS/Marshall) finished with seven kills, three digs and a block. The setting duo of sophomore Gigi Meyer (Gainesville, Fla./Buchholz HS) and junior Courtney Greenberg (Fort Myers, Fla./Fort Myers HS/Juniata College) finished with a combined 32 assists and 14 digs.

USF took the first set (25-14) thanks to a .314 hitting percentage in the frame. The Bulls defense held FGCU to a .083 hitting percentage to start the fifth match in the series’ history (FGCU leads 3-2).

After never leading in the first set, the Eagles jumped out to 14-5 lead, highlighted by four kills from Hopper. Trailing 18-12, USF used an 8-0 run to take a 20-18 lead and force head coach Dave Nichols to call a timeout. After the break, the Bulls scored five of the next eight points to win the set 25-21 and take a 2-0 lead in the match.

The Green and Blue didn’t go away quietly and were able to snap USF’s set win streak, which started during a 3-1 win over James Madison on Sept. 14, at 11, with a 25-17 decision in the third stanza. After the two squads battled to a 14-14 tie, FGCU employed an 11-3 run, capped by a service ace from Greenberg, to take the set (25-17).

The Bulls rebounded in the fourth set by holding FGCU to a .075 hitting percentage. USF led the game from start to finish and went on to win the set (25-16) and the match 3-1.

The Eagles will be back in action this weekend when they open Atlantic Sun play with a pair of matches in Georgia. FGCU will take on Kennesaw State on Friday, Sept. 21 at 7 p.m. and will battle Mercer on Saturday, Sept. 22 at 3 p.m.