Nov. 16, 2008
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Florida State put the finishing touches on a perfect weekend after taking down Georgia Tech 3-1 (22-25, 25-18, 26-24, 25-19) inside Tully Gym on Sunday afternoon. The Noles beat Clemson 3-2 on Friday night and are now 19-8 overall and tied for third in the ACC with an 11-6 record. The Yellow Jackets slip back to 18-9 this season and are fourth in the conference at 10-7. The victory is also the fourth-straight for FSU and the Noles have won the last eight of nine matches this season.
“We’re getting better and I’m really proud of the way they fought back in set two,” Seminole head coach Chris Poole said. “We could have given up that set and gone to the half at 2-0, but we didn’t. We were almost flawless in the last third of set two. We earned 23 of the 25 points we scored and that says a lot about the improvement this team has made this year.”
The Yellow Jackets took a 1-0 lead early with a 25-22 win in set one. Sophomore Stephanie Neville led the attack for Florida State in the set, getting six kills down with no errors for a perfect .600 attack percentage. Fellow outside hitter and second-year Seminole, Lauren Richardson, recorded three kills and three digs in the first set.
Florida State was down by nine points early on in the second set, but would make a huge come back and go on an eleven-point run to win the set, 25-18, with sophomore Taylor Wilson serving for 10 of those points. Richardson would lead the offense with seven kills while also recording the only solo block for FSU. On the defense, the blocking duo of juniors Jordana Price and Nikki Baker would put a stop to two Georgia Tech attacks and notch four kills and 17 assists, respectively.
The third set was the closest of the afternoon with the Seminoles pulling out with the 16-24 win. The Jackets would score the first point but it would be a back and forth battle between the teams for the lead throughout. FSU would serve for set point twice and it was a kill from Richardson that sealed the deal. Also making big contributions was junior middle blocker Lauren Young, who came off the bench to add three kills in the third set after notching three in the second.
The fourth and final set belonged to the Noles. Georgia Tech would score first, but as soon as the Garnet and Gold got on the board the lead would remain in favor of the home team. Florida State held the visitors to 19 points as it extended the winning streak to four-straight after knocking off two top ACC teams this weekend.
Richardson once again led FSU with 17 kills and now has a dozen double-doubles this season after recording 15 digs. The co-captain also topped the squad with 19.5 points and notched one solo and one assisted block.
Price had a big day with 16 kills and three assisted blocks and it was Young who dominated with a .562 attack percentage and claimed one solo and two assisted blocks. The fourth Nole to post double-digit kills was Neville with 14 along with two assisted blocks.
“At the beginning of the year we would have made enough mistakes overall that we couldn’t have fought our way back,” Poole said. “But we didn’t do that in this match. In the last couple of matches we’ve really shown ourselves being able to get into the match and be able to maintain a certain focus level. That’s helping us.”
With the ACC title on the line, Florida State will hit the road for the last time in the regular season to face North Carolina State and North Carolina. The Seminoles took down the Wolfpack, 3-1, last month, but dropped a 3-2 match to the Tar Heels who are currently one of the top teams in the conference. The NC State match will be Thursday, Nov. 20, in Raleigh and the UNC match will be Friday in Chapel Hill.