The Seminoles are looking to win their first four ACC matches for the fifth time in the nine-year tenure of head coach Chris Poole. In two of those seasons, 2011 and 2012, FSU went onto capture the ACC Championship.
The Seminoles open the weekend with a 7 p.m. match against Syracuse on Friday, Sept. 30, looking to move to 5-0 all-time against the Orange. Three of the four victories against Syracuse have come by virtue of a sweep, including last season’s 25-16, 25-19, 25-20 triumph in Tallahassee on Oct. 23.
Syracuse (2-10, 1-1 ACC) earned a split in its first league matches last weekend, posting a 3-1 victory over Boston College. The Orange are led offensively by the duo of Anastasiya Gorlina and Mackenzie Weaver with 99 and 93 kills, respectively, while Belle Sand (147 digs) and Amber Witherspoon (42 total blocks) lead the defense.
FSU returns to the court at 1 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 1, for the 20th all-time meeting against Boston College (5-7, 0-2 ACC). The Seminoles, 18-1 in the series, have won their last 12 straight dating back to a 3-1 victory on Nov. 7, 2008.
Boston College (5-7, 0-2 ACC) is on a four-match losing streak despite taking ACC preseason favorite North Carolina to five sets in Chestnut Hill, Mass., on Sunday, Sept. 25. The Eagles, who clash with Miami on Friday night, are led statistical by the trio of Julia Topar (118 kills), Devon Michaelis (127 digs) and Sophia West (32 blocks).
The Seminoles, who have posted victories in of six of their last seven matches, are led offensively by the duo of Milica Kubura (127 kills) and Katie Horton (120), winners of the last two ACC Player of the Week awards. That tandem, along with Mara Green, who leads conference and ranks 15th nationally in attack percentage (.411), has helped Florida State to a .262 team attack percentage and 12.88 kills/set.
On defense the combination of Melanie Keil (68 total blocks), who is 38th in the NCAA in total blocks, Cecilie Woie (129 digs) along with the front row threat of Green (37 total blocks) and Horton (31 total blocks) have limited the opposition to a .189 attack percentage and 530 kills.
“All home matches are extremely important and we need to continue improving our team play,” said Poole. “Both Syracuse and Boston College will move us around defensively and we have to remain disciplined in order to be successful.”
Seminole fans will have the opportunity to watch both matches as part of the ACC Network Extra package. Friday’s match will include commentary from Cecile Reynaud and Tom Block. On Sunday, Florida State fans will hear commentary about the match from Reynaud and Jonathan Schillace.
On Sunday, Seminole fans will receive a special commemorative Melanie Keil poster that she will autograph following the match.
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