RALEIGH, N.C. – The Florida State volleyball team (19-9, 15-3 ACC) took down NC State (15-13, 9-9 ACC) in four sets on the road on Friday afternoon, giving the Seminoles two wins to close out the season. With a 15-3 conference record, Florida State finishes the regular season in second place in the ACC.
The Seminoles hit .299 in the set, led by a .636 effort from middle blocker Deja Williams, a .444 hitting percentage from middle blocker Tiana Jackson, and a .433 effort from outside hitter Christina Ambrose. The offense was supported by 29 assists from Brianne Burkert and a double-double from Adrian Ell (19 assists, 10 digs).
Sophomore middle blocker Taryn Knuth had a hand in 12 of the team’s 14 total blocks, tying her career high of three solo blocks, while Burkert saw her first solo block of the season in the first set.
The team turns their attention to the NCAA Tournament selection show, which will air on ESPNU this Sunday, November 23 at 8:30 pm ET. Florida State looks for its 10th straight tournament appearance and 21st overall this season. FSU is one of only 12 programs who have made the last nine consecutive tournaments, and looks to continue being a staple program in the postseason.
Set 1 – NCSU 25, FSU 19
Florida State struggled to hold off NC State’s offense in the beginning of the set as the Wolfpack found their way around the Seminoles’ block to find the floor. Halfway through the opening set, a combination of different plays from the front row and a tighter block helped FSU slow down their opponent.
A 3-1 run led by kills from Caffrey and Burkert helped the Seminoles close NC State’s lead to 21-18, but the Wolfpack’s consistent offense helped them close out the opening set for a 1-0 lead in the match.
Set 2 – FSU 25, NCSU
While the Wolfpack once again started off strong in the first few points of the set, an ace from Madison Sullivan started off a 6-0 run that gave Florida State its first lead of the match and forced NC State to take its first timeout. In their 7-0 scoring run, FSU saw kills from Knuth and Ambrose, a block from the pair and three errors from the Wolfpack.
The Seminoles held NC State to just .000 hitting with three blocks and an equally tough offense through the first half of the set. The Wolfpack saw fewer unforced errors in the last half of the set and placed kills deeper into the court to close the Seminoles’ lead, but a pair of blocks and a kill from Caffrey helped Florida State close out the set and tie up the match.
Set 3 – FSU 30, NCSU 28
Florida State took the first three points in the set with a block from Knuth and Tiana Jackson, a kill from Jackson and then an ace from Adrian Ell. While the Wolfpack took more swings at the ball and earned more kills, three blocks from Florida State and nine unforced errors from NC State kept the set tight.
The Seminoles reached set point with a block from Knuth and Burkert and an ace from Wicinski, but the Wolfpack tied it back up at the 24-all mark. The set was tied four more times from there before back-to-back kills from Ambrose finished it off for FSU and gave the Seminoles a 2-1 lead in the match.
Set 4 – FSU 25, NCSU 19
A consistent attack from Florida State highlighted the first 10 points in the set, as the Seminoles were hitting 1.000 with five kills on five attacks. From there, errors from the Wolfpack kept Florida State in the lead, and the Seminoles capitalized on those errors, using a strong defensive presence to keep NC State’s hitting percentage down.
A consistent hitting effort helped the Seminoles hold the edge over the Wolfpack, as Florida State hit .462 in the set with 15 kills on 26 attempts – their fewest total attacks of the match. Three kills from Caffrey kept the team’s hitting percentage high and finished off the match for FSU.
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