WASHINGTON, D.C. – (Seminoles.com) – For the second-consecutive match, the eighth-ranked Florida State indoor volleyball team won in five sets, this time holding off Marquette 3-2 on Saturday in the American Tournament which is being played in the Bender Arena.
“That was a tough road match for us,” FSU head coach Chris Poole said. “Marquette has a different style of a team. They’re not as big and physical, but they’re very well-coached and they have great skills. They will play for their conference championship and do well this season.”
After falling short in the fourth set following a comeback, Florida State stared hot in the fifth, jumping out to an 8-2 lead at the switch. Marquette would not go away as they put together a 5-2 run of their own, but a kill from junior Kiara Wright gave the Seminoles an 11-7 advantage.
Redshirt sophomore middle blocker Sarah Burrington swug for two kills down the stretch before a kill from freshman right side hitter Milica Kubura set the Seminoles up with match point 14-11.
The Golden Eagles refused to quit, scoring a pair of points, but a block from Kubura and Wright lifted the Seminoles to the 15-13 fifth set win.
Burrington, along with junior outside hitter Nicole Walch set new career highs for kills, while senior setter Sarah Wickstrom scored a career best in assists.
Walch led the attack with 24 kills and eight digs and Burrington had 16 kills on 22 attempts while hitting for .682 percent.
“Sarah Burrington caught fire this week,” Poole said. “She played well like we expected and she had a great offensive match. Nicole struggled at times, but she made the plays when she needed to make them.”
Wickstrom scored her first double-double of the season, dishing 39 assists and 12 digs.
“Both Sarah and Hailey (Luke) did a great job running the offense today,” Poole said. “Burrington and Wickstrom connected very well.”
Kubura had another solid outing, scoring 12 kills along with five block assists. Wright was also big on the block with one solo and five assists on top contributing 7 kills.
Senior redshirt libero Katie Mosher was under 19 digs and tallied eight assists and a pair of aces.
“She did a great job digging some hard hits late,” Poole said.
Florida State could not find a rhythm in the first as Marquette pulled ahead with a 6-2 run following a 10-10 tie to put the Seminoles in a 12-17 hole. FSU made a 4-1 push toward the end of the set, but Marquette held off the charge and took the 1-0, lead 25-21.
The second set, FSU started off hot and took an 8-3 lead with kills from Burrington, Wright, Vaughn, Walch and Kubura. Throughout the set, the Seminoles built off their five-point advantage before closing out the set 25-19.
FSU carried the momentum into the third, starting off with a monstrous 10-0 run that set the tone for the set. The Seminoles took the third, 25-19 and the 2-1 lead.
In the fourth, the Seminoles fell into a 15-23 hole. Not giving in, they quickly put together a 5-0 scamper before Nele Barber put down a kill for Marquette setting up set point.
However, the Noles were not finished and came back to tie the set 24-24. Florida State fended off a total of six set points before Marquette took the fourth 27-25, forcing a fifth set.
In the fifth, Florida State held on for the 15-13 and 3-2 victory.
“We knew this would be a tough stretch for us,” Poole said. “We had a short week of practice and we have a big match tomorrow. We need to play more consistent and we need to play well tomorrow.”
The Seminoles will play their second match of the tournament against American on Sunday at 11 a.m.
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