FORT WORTH, Texas – The Florida State Beach Volleyball team closed out a perfect weekend at the ‘Fight at the Fort’ Tournament in Fort Worth on Sunday morning cruising to a 5-0 victory over Texas A&M Corpus Christi.
For the second time in as many days, the second-ranked Seminoles did not relinquish a set winning in straight sets on all five courts against the Islanders. Florida State finished the weekend without conceding a point outscoring the competition 15-0 in three matches.
“Even though we are undefeated, we changed some stuff up this weekend looking for our strongest line-up,” Florida State head coach Brooke Niles said. “We are fortunate that we have so much depth on our team which allows us to mix and match different pairs in competition to see how they stack up. I am really proud of the way the team played this weekend because no matter who I paired everyone with, they stayed really focused and played hard.”
FSU got off to a fast start thanks to the pairs of Katherine Plessy and Blyss Harkness (court four) and Hailey Luke and Kayla Joyce (court five) who held the Islanders under double-digit points in both sets to take an early 2-0 lead.
Kristina Pellitteri and Victoria Paranagua, playing at the one number position on Sunday for the first time this year, while Julie Brown and Jace Pardon got the day off, defeated Texas A&M CC’s Brianna Brink and Kate Klepetka, 21-14, 21-12.
Sierra Sanchez and Vanessa Freire saw action on court two and posted a straight set victory over the Islanders’ pair of Morgan Carlson and Kristyn Nicholson, 21-15, 21-8.
The wins for Pellitteri/Paranagua and Sanchez/Freire kept them undefeated as pairs on the year moving to 12-0 and 10-0, respectively.
On court three, Annie Montgomery teamed with freshman Macy Jerger, who made her first collegiate start on Sunday, to record a 21-8, 21-9 win over Texas A&M CC’s Kirstee McGarva and Mallory Moran.
In an exhibition match, Florida State’s Ali Eager and Brooke Kuhlman defeated TCU’s Sierra Kile and Natalia Mkadenovic, 21-17, 21-19.
With the win, Florida State improves to 12-0 on the young season as all 12 wins have come on the road.
“I’m a firm believer in that every situation that you are in, I try and look at it as a way to prepare this team for whatever awaits them in the future,” added Niles. “We use all these things, different weather conditions, different balls, different sand, to gain experience in all sorts of situations. Unfortunately, we are going to be on the road a lot this year, so nothing is going to be comfortable for us; we have to be comfortable with the uncomfortable.”
The Seminoles return to action next weekend in DeLand, Fla., at the Stetson Beach Invitational, March 25 & 26. Florida State will square-off against No. 10 Florida International and No. 4 UCLA on Friday, while facing No. 5 Hawaii and No. 17 Florida Atlantic on Saturday.
Match 12 – Fort Worth, Texas
No. 2 Florida State d. Texas A&M Corpus Christi, 5-0
Court 1: Kristina Pellitteri/Victoria Paranagua, FSU d. Brianna Brink/Kate Klepetka, TAMUCC – 21-14, 21-12
Court 2: Vanessa Freire/Sierra Sanchez, FSU d. Morgan Carlson/Kristyn Nicholson, TAMUCC – 21-15, 21-8
Court 3: Macy Jerger/Annie Montgomery, FSU d. Kirstee McGarva/Mallory Moran, TAMUCC – 21-8, 21-9
Court 4: Blyss Harkness/Katherine Plessy, FSU d. Madison Woods/Madison Green, TAMUCC – 21-8, 21-6
Court 5: Kayla Joyce/Hailey Luke, FSU d. Madeleine Doud/Morgan Williams, TAMUCC – 21-6, 21-6
EXH: Ali Eager/Brooke Kuhlman, FSU d. Sierra Kile/Natalia Mkadenovic, TCU – 21-17, 21-19
Order of Finish: 4, 5, 3*, 1, 2
*clinched dual win