MANHATTAN BEACH, Calif. – The second-ranked Florida State beach volleyball team (4-0) posted a pair of victories over No. 6 Long Beach State (5-1) and Cal Poly (3-5) to open the East Meets West Invitational at Manhattan Beach.“I saw a lot of great things today,” head coach Brooke Niles said. “We are still working on our partnerships, but I have seen a lot of progress with the team.
I am proud of how everyone played today and excited to see how we come out and play tomorrow against some more tough competition.”
The Seminoles got off to a hot start, defeating the 49ers, 4-1, in the morning. The pair of sophomore Macy Jerger and junior Victoria Paranagua got things started with a 21-15, 21-16 straight sets win on court three. On court four, senior Sierra Sanchez and redshirt junior Hailey Luke followed along and won their match in straight sets as well (24-22, 21-16). On court one sophomore Brooke Kuhlman and graduate senior Leigh Andrew fell in straight sets (17-21, 16-21) giving the Noles a 2-1 lead.
Junior Vanessa Freire and freshman Francesca Goncalves battled and won their match handedly in the third set, 21-16, 17-21, 15-5, on court two. Redshirt freshman Eva Torruella and redshirt junior Katie Horton captured the final points for the Seminoles on court five, as they completed the 4-1 victory over the 49ers.
In the second match of the day, Florida State returned to Manhattan Beach to face Cal Poly. The Seminoles dominated the Mustangs thanks to straight set wins on four of the five courts. Horton and freshman Molly McBain started it off for the Noles winning in a dominate fashion (21-8, 21-13) on court five. The Garnet and Gold did not let its foot off of the gas as Freire and Goncalves (21-14, 21-16) and Jerger and Paranagua (21-11, 22-20) both won in straight sets to give the Seminoles the 3-0 advantage and the match clinching points on court two and court three, respectively. Sophomore Nikki Esposito and redshirt junior Hailey Luke got the fourth win of the match in straight sets as well (21-14, 21-18) on court four. The Noles finished off the Mustangs with a three-set comeback by Andrew and Kuhlman (18-21, 21-14, 18-16) on court one to give the Noles a 5-0 advantage and their fourth win of the season.
The Seminoles return to action on Sunday as they play No. 3 Pepperdine (3 p.m. ET) and No. 4 UCLA (6 p.m. ET) to wrap up the East Meets West Invitational.
Match 1 – Manhattan Beach, Calif.
No. 2 Florida State 4, No. 6 Long Beach State 1 – East Meets West Invitational – Manhattan Beach, CA #1: Rachel Nieto/Nele Barber (LBSU) def. Leigh Andrew/Brooke Kuhlman (FSU) – 21-17, 21-16
#2: Vanessa Freire/Francesca Goncalves (FSU) def. Kobi Pekich/Sasha Karelov (LBSU) – 21-16, 17-21, 15-5
#3: Macy Jerger/Victoria Paranagua (FSU) def. Morea Wagner/Heather Weiss (LBSU) – 21-15, 21-16
#4: Sierra Sanchez/Hailey Luke (FSU) def. Anete Brinke/Hailey Harward (LBSU) – 24-22, 21-16
#5: Katie Horton/Eva Torruella (FSU) def. Janelle Hudson/Megan Kruidhof (LBSU) – 21-13, 20-22, 15-13
Order of finish: 3, 4, 1, 2*, 5
No. 2 Florida State 5, Cal Poly 0 – East Meets West Invitational – Manhattan Beach, CA
#1: Leigh Andrew/Brooke Kuhlman (FSU) def. Emily Sonny/Hannah Hubbard (CP) – 18-21, 21-14, 18-16
#2: Vanessa Freire/Francesca Goncalves (FSU) def. Adlee Van Winden/Taylor Nelson (CP) – 21-14, 21-16
#3: Macy Jerger/Victoria Paranagua (FSU) def. Raeann Greisen/Heather Pembroke (CP) – 21-11, 22-20
#4: Nikki Esposito/Hailey Luke (FSU) def. Savannah Niemen/Anna Gorman (CP) – 21-14, 21-18
#5: Katie Horton/Molly McBain (FSU) def. Taylor Gruenwald/Brayden Gruenwald (CP) – 21-8, 21-13
Order of finish: 5, 2, 3*, 4, 1
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