Oct. 20, 2006
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. –
GAME SCORES: Florida Sate 3, Wake Forest 0 (30-21, 30-20, 30-24)
After a heartbreaking loss to Miami earlier in the week, the Florida State volleyball team could have gone one of two ways. Fortunately, the Seminoles chose the high road as they rebounded with a 3-0 sweep of Wake Forest on Friday (Oct. 20) at Lucy McDaniel Court.
Florida State continued its trend of rebounding after a loss with a victory as it improve to 15-5 overall, 9-2 in the conference. FSU’s win, coupled with a Clemson loss at Virginia, moved the Seminoles a half game ahead of Clemson for second place. The Seminoles have won nine or more conference matches in four of head coach Todd Kress’ five seasons. The Demon Deacons dropped to 11-8, 7-3 in the ACC.
“It was a big match for us,” Kress said. “You never know what’s going to happen after a match like we had against Miami. Something like that, you can start questioning things, questioning your confidence and I thought it was important for us tonight to come out and, not necessarily dominate play, but just come out and make a statement to get back on track. I thought we did a nice job of that tonight.”
With 15 digs, junior libero Summer Weissing (Boca Raton, Fla.) moved into sole possession of third place in school history with 1,200 digs. Also moving up on the career charts was senior middle blocker Sarah Griffin (Hereford, Texas) as her four aces slid her up to number seven with 121 aces for her career.
“Summer is just getting better and better in her role and she needs to solidify our defensive effort because we need to get better defensively,” Kress noted.”
Leading the offense was junior outside hitter Makini Thompson (Quincy, Mass.) as she recorded 16 kills, while Griffin was next at nine winners. Posting a team-high five blocks was rookie middle blocker Brianna Barry (Winter Springs, Fla.) with five stuffs. Senior setter Zrinka Tomic (Nustar, Croatia) produced 42 assists and sophomore defensive specialist Alex Plummer (Woodbury, Minn.) had 10 digs.
Early in game one both teams took turns with two point leads with the Demon Deacons erasing an 8-6 FSU margin with a 3-0 run as the visitors regained the lead. Two Thompson kills and a Weissing ace keyed a 4-0 Florida State run as it took a 13-10 advantage. Out of a timeout, Wake Forest tied the match with a 3-0 run of their own. Thompson came through with a kill then served four-straight points to put FSU ahead 20-15. That would be as close as Wake Forest would get as the lead would grow to as many as 10 on a Barry kill before FSU closed out the game 30-21
Leading all attackers was Thompson as she put down eight kills, while freshmen outside hitter Jackie BonSalle (Albuquerque, N.M.) followed at four and Griffin was one behind her. Florida State out-hit the Deacons .326 (19-5-243) to .216 (14-6-37) and held a 3-1 advantage in blocks while WFU was up 16-14 for digs.
Down 6-5 in game two, the rookie Barry gave the Seminoles the lead virtually by herself. She followed up a kill by combining with BonSalle for a block then recorded two-straight kills as part of a 4-0 run that gave FSU a 9-6 margin. Wake Forest got as close as 12-10 but Tomic picked up a kill then served six-straight points as the Seminoles took a 19-10 advantage with the help of four WFU miscues. The Demon Deacons could not get any closer than seven with lead swelling to 10 (28-18) prior to the 30-20 victory
Thompson led the way in winners again in as she recorded five with Skower one behind at four as they were the only two Seminoles to record more than two kills. Weissing had eight digs and Griffin produced three blocks. Even though it dipped in hitting percentage, the Seminoles’ defense helped it to a .231 (15-6-39) to .025 (11-10-40) margin. FSU also led 17-14 in digs and 4-3 for blocks.
“We have to serve well, that is a staple of what we have to do to win and we are a good serving team, it’s part of who we are,” Kress added. “We have to not necessarily score from the endline, but we have to keep teams out of system and I thought we did a good job of that tonight. We respect Wake a lot, they’re really strong at the pins and we didn’t want to defend both pins tonight so if we could keep them out of system, defend one or the other, we’d take our chances.”
The Demon Deacons could have easily ran away with game three, but several miscues by the visitors kept FSU in the game at crucial times. Up 8-5, two WFU miscues and a Tomic kill made it 9-9. Even though Wake Forest mounted a 15-12 lead, two more errors kept the Seminoles in the game until Tomic came through with an ace followed by back-to-back kills by Thompson and Griffin to give FSU its first lead since 4-3 at 16-15.
Two attack errors and a Griffin ace increased FSU’s lead to 21-18, but the Seminoles gave two points back to help Wake Forest tie the match at 23-23. The Demon Deacons returned the favor with an error then Griffin and Tomic followed with two kills as Florida State went ahead 26-23. Wake Forest would only scored one more point the rest of the way as Griffin notched a pair of kills for the 30-24 triumph.
The two kills at the end propelled Griffin to the team lead with five winners. Thompson was next with a trio. The Demon Deacons led Florida State in virtually every category with a .225 (15-6-40) to .178 (15-7-45) advantage in hitting as well as digs (20-19) and blocks (3-1).
Florida State will have one of its toughest challenges of the year on Sunday (Oct. 22). as it plays host to first-place Duke at 1 p.m. Sunday the Seminoles will participate in the “Dig for the Cure” campaign to benefit the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation. Flat donations or per dig on Sunday will be donated to the foundation’s local chapter.