MANHATTAN BEACH, Calif. – The No. 5 Florida State beach volleyball team dropped two matches on the final day of the East Meets West Challenge, falling to No. 4 UCLA and No. 2 USC on Sunday (March 11).
Both duals ended 3-2 and were the closest the team has seen this season, with both clinching points decided on the final courts played.
The team will stay in California for the remainder of the week, participating in single-dual events against Pepperdine on Wednesday (March 14), and Loyola Marymount and Long Beach State on Thursday (March 15).
Order of Finish: 1, 5, 2, 4, 3*
The Seminoles saw tougher competition from the very beginning of their match against UCLA, as the Bruins pulled out two quick wins to gain an early 2-0 lead over FSU.
Despite the two-point deficit, the Seminoles weren’t ready to give up yet and gained two wins from the pairings of Freire/Kuhlman and Horton/Luke to tie up the dual. The final point came down to the No. 3 position, as the Putt/Goncalves took the first set, but the Bruins took the second to force a third set. The battle on court three stayed close, but UCLA was able to close out the third set and clinch the match.
Order of Finish: 1, 4, 2, 3, 5*
USC’s dominant top-seeded pair was able to earn a win at the No. 1 position for a 1-0 lead, but Horton/Luke fought back at No. 4 to tie it up. The wins kept going back and forth as the Women of Troy earned another point at the No. 2 position, and the Seminoles retaliated with a win from Kuhlman/Goncalves at No. 3.
With the dual tied 2-2 all eyes were on the fifth court as the pairing of McBain/Fitzpatrick looked to come back from a first set loss. The Women of Troy proved to be too much for the Seminoles as they were able to pull out the two-set win and clinch the match for USC.
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