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No. 1 FGCU Upset by No. 4 UNF in A-Sun Tournament Semifinals
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|Stats at a Glance||UNF||FGCU|
MASTERS - 2
NASHVILLE, Tenn. - The No.1 seeded Florida Gulf Coast University volleyball team fought back from a 2-0 deficit, but fell to No. 4 UNF 3-2 (20-25, 18-25, 25-22, 25-23, 12-15) in the Atlantic Sun Conference Tournament semifinals at Allen Arena.
“At first we have to give credit to UNF, because they played really well tonight,” said head coach Dave Nichols. “I’m really frustrated because we never played at the level we are capable of playing. We fought hard to make it a match, but we never played efficiently and we never able to get into a rhythm. This has been a very disappointing night for the players and coaches.”
The 2012 A-Sun regular season champion Eagles (22-10 overall, 16-2 A-Sun), made their third appearance in the last four years at the conference tournament and fell in the semifinals for the second year in a row.
Sophomore Jill Hopper (Muncie, Ind./Yorktown HS) nearly recorded a triple-double with 16 kills, nine digs and a career-high nine blocks. Junior Kaitlin Holm (Fort Myers, Fla./Fort Myers HS/Marshall) added 10 kills, five digs and three blocks. Sophomore Olivia Mesner (Boca Raton, Fla./Spanish River HS) finished with 10 kills and three blocks. Junior Christine Pinder (Gainesville, Fla./Buchholz HS/Houston/Central Florida CC) tallied with eight kills and 13 digs. Sophomore Whitney Masters (Muncie, Ind./Wapahani HS) finished with 15 digs, while Gigi Meyer (Gainesville, Fla./Buchholz HS) recorded a double-double 28 assists and 13 digs and junior Courtney Greenberg (Fort Myers, Fla./Fort Myers HS/Juniata College) registered 19 assists and five digs on the night.
After fighting back from a 2-0 deficit to force a decisive fifth set, FGCU was unable to complete to comeback. With the game tied at 4-4, UNF (22-11, 11-7 A-Sun) used a 6-3 run to grab a 10-7 lead. The Eagles responded with a 4-1 spurt, highlighted by kills from Hopper, Brittany Muse (Arcadia, Fla./DeSoto County HS) and Karina Mambuca (Naples, Fla./Gulf Coast HS/Southeastern), to tie the set at 11-11. The Ospreys then went on to score four of the next five points to win the match and advance to the A-Sun title match.
The Green and Blue won the blocking battle (14-7), but were outhit (.221-.190). The Eagles also lost the battle in kills (74-55), assists (73-51), and digs (88-67).
FGCU ends the season winning four of its last six matches and will start preparations for the 2013 volleyball year.