WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – (Seminoles.com) The fourth-ranked Florida State (21-0, 9-0) indoor volleyball team defeated Wake Forest (12-11, 2-7) 3-1 (25-17, 18-25, 25-11, 25-22) on Sunday in Reynolds Gym.
The Seminoles continue ride a record-setting start to the season, stretching to 21-0, which is a winning streak that ties the best in school history that was set in 1981 from Oct.9-Oct.30.
“It’s a win,” FSU head coach Chris Poole said. “The girls are continuing to battle. We still aren’t playing as well as we would like, but we’re still winning the big points and those are making the difference in the matches.”
Redshirt junior middle blocker Mercedes Vaughn led the attack with a season high of 13 kills, hitting for .385 percent adding six block assists. Junior outside hitter Nicole Walch had 11 kills and added one solo block and one block assist.
“Mercedes had one of her better matches this year,” Poole said. “She’s so dynamic and athletic and there are so many things she can do. She hasn’t played the right side before so she’s still learning and getting better every week and that’s encouraging.”
The Seminoles registered a team total of 15 blocks with redshirt sophomore Sarah Burrington and junior middle blocker Kiara Wright each producing one solo block and six assists. Wright added eight kills while Burrinton tallied seven.
Senior setter Sarah Wickstrom amassed 22 assists and accounted for three aces, while sophomore setter Hailey Luke produced a double-double with 20 assists and 12 digs. Redshirt senior Katie Mosher was under 13 digs and an ace.
After the ninth tie in the first set, Wright teamed up on back-to-back blocks to give the Seminoles the 15-13 lead, forcing Wake Forest to call timeout.
Out of the break, FSU poured on three more points with two kills and an attack error to move ahead 18-13, causing The Deacons to burn another timeout.
Wake Forest ended the 5-0 stretch with a kill and capitalized on an FSU error, but the Seminoles responded with another 4-0 scamper to go up 22-15. The Deacons were awarded the next two points off FSU errors and Poole decided to use his final time out up 22-17.
Out of the timeout, Wright teamed up with Walch for her fourth block of the set before Wake Forest committed an error setting up set point for the Seminoles.
Walch delivered an ace to cap off the first 25-17 for the 1-0 lead.
Wake Forest jumped out to an 11-7 lead in the second and held the four-point advantage before stretching it to five after an ace up 15-10.
Freshman right side hitter Milica Kubura swung for the side out before The Demon Deacons committed an error, but Wake Forest extended the lead back to five 17-12 after a kill and an ace that hit the net and dropped just on the FSU side. Poole would call his final timeout of the set.
Out of the break, the Deacons continued to answer, but after back-to-back strikes from Vaughn, the Seminoles cut the lead to 19-15, forcing Wake Forest to call a timeout.
Although Florida State sided out with a block, Wake Forest was able to close out the set 25-18 to tie the match, 1-1.
“We dropped out hitting percentage in that second set,” Poole said. “We didn’t play consistently in that set and that’s not the first time that’s happened. It’s unfortunate but those are the things we will work on. In the three sets we won we held them to just 50 points and that is something we’re capable of doing every time.”
The Seminoles powered to a 10-3 lead in the third behind three kills from Walch before she fueled a 5-0 run on serve. Florida State stretched its lead to 10 after Walch went up for a solo block up 17-7.
Florida State outscored Wake Forest 8-4 down the stretch as a block from Kubura and Burrington closed out the third 25-11 for the 2-1 advantage.
In the fourth, Florida State fell behind 11-7 before Poole called timeout.
Out of the break, the Seminoles fought back to tie the set at 12, 14 and 15 before Burrington stretched for a block giving the Seminoles the 16-15 lead forcing Wake Forest to call a timeout.
Horton swung for a monster kill for the 17-15 lead, but Wake Forest came back for another stalemate. Florida State pulled ahead after an attacking error and a kill from Kubura for a two-point cushion, 19-17 causing Wake Forest to burn its final timeout.
After, Horton placed a drop shot back to the back corner for the 20-17 lead, but the Deacons sided out before failing to convert on a long rally. FSU stretched its lead to 22-18 before Wake Forest triggered back-to-back points causing Poole to call timeout.
Following the talk, Walch slammed a kill off the block for the 23-20 edge, but a service error cut the lead to two.
On the next play, the Wickstom set Wright for a perfect kill for match point, 24-21 but Wake Forest fended it off with a kill.
Walch would end the match with a kill from the left side giving the Seminoles the 25-22 fourth set and 3-1 victory.
The Seminoles continue their road swing next weekend heading to NC State on Friday before taking on Clemson on Sunday. For more information on FSU volleyball visit Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.