Sept. 4, 2004
Led by FSU Invitational Most Valuable Player Amanda Santos, the Florida State women’s volleyball team earned the FSU Invitational title with a 30-17, 30-22, 30-13 win over South Alabama (0-3) Saturday night at Tully Gymnasium. The Seminoles improved to 3-0 with the victory – their best start under head coach Todd Kress and best since the 2000 season. Santos, the senior middle blocker, was nearly flawless in the match with 12 kills on 17 attempts with just one error for a .647 hitting performance.
After winning their opener over Sam Houston State in five games, the Seminoles swept their next two tournament opponents which led Kress to be encouraged by his team’s early-season performance.
“I think we got better with every match,” Kress said. “We made a lot of improvements which is good. We scored in all areas, blocked well and played good defense. We need to continue to play with a more aggressive mentality. I am always going to say that we still had too many unforced errors, but we will clean that up over the next couple of weeks before we head into ACC play.”
The Seminoles didn’t trail in the first set and held the Jaguars to a -.139 hitting performance and six kills. Seminole junior left side Kristen Rust, who was named to the all-tournament team, led the way in the first set with four kills on her way to 11 for the match and a .421 hitting percentage while Santos added three kills on five attempts. Florida State trailed once at 3-4 in game two but continued to play strong at the net and the Seminoles improved their hitting with a .323 game-two performance. FSU senior left side Renee Hill emerged with five kills on 13 attempts in the set. In the final game, South Alabama scored first and led again 4-3, but the Tribe went on a 15-1 run on its way to a dominating third-game performance of 20 kills on 30 attempts with just four errors. Santos, who had six kills heading into the final game, doubled her performance in game three with a perfect 6-for-6 performance.
Florida State sophomore setter Jessica Skower recorded 43 of FSU’s 48 set assists. Rust added three service aces and six digs while freshman defensive specialist Summer Weissing, who also earned all-tournament team honors, led the way with 10 digs. The Seminoles recorded 51 kills on their way to a .387 hitting performance for the match, their best of the young season, while South Alabama hit -021 with just 19 kills.
Florida State will travel to Tuscaloosa, Ala., Tuesday, Sept. 7 for a 7 p.m. contest with the Alabama Crimson Tide. The Tribe’s next home match will be against the Florida Gators on Tuesday, Sept. 14th at 7 p.m.
2004 FSU Invitational All-Tournament Team Kristen Rust Florida State Summer Weissing Florida State Lindsey Combes Stetson Whitney Sanders South Alabama Chrissy Engle Sam Houston Jennifer Henrichsen Sam Houston MVP: Amanda Santos, Florida State