TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The Florida State volleyball team shutout Southern Miss and Florida A&M on Saturday (9/8) to close out the team’s 3-0 weekend at the Home2 Suites by Hilton Tallahassee Seminole Invitational. FSU improves to a 4-4 record, and has yet to surrender a single set in any of its four victories this season.
Following a Friday night victory over VCU, the Seminoles turned around to defeat the Golden Eagles on Saturday morning on their home court, and traveled across town to defeat the Rattlers on the Florida A&M Campus at night.
Over the three matches this weekend, the Seminoles saw an average hitting percentage of .409 to outhit every one of their opponents, and had fewer errors than any of the three teams they faced.
In the 16-match series against the Golden Eagles, FSU has not given up one set and has now shutout USM in every match since the series began in 1982. The Seminoles have now earned nine-straight shutouts against Florida A&M, and have won the last 24 matches in the series.
Florida State turns around to host in-state rival Florida on Wednesday (9/12) at 6:00 pm in the Fresh From Florida Sunshine Showdown, and then will head to Alabama to face Auburn on Sunday (9/16) to close out the non-conference season.
Set 1 – FSU 25, USM 16
The Seminoles held Southern Miss to a negative hitting percentage from the beginning of the set, using a strong defensive effort and consistent hitting to stay ahead. FSU did not record a single offensive error until after they earned their 23rd point in the set.
FSU hit .484 in the set, picking up 17 kills on 31 total attacks. Sophomore Tiana Jackson saw another perfect set, picking up three kills on three attacks without registering a single error.
Set 2 – FSU 25, USM 17
While the Golden Eagles kept the score close in the beginning and tied it up twice, a block from Murray and Jackson at the 6-3 FSU mark swung the momentum back in the Seminoles’ favor. A 3-0 run gave the Seminoles an 11-6 lead, and a solo block from Knuth in the middle and back-to-back kills from Caffrey put FSU on a 6-0 run. FSU stayed ahead in the set to gain a 2-0 lead in the match, picking up only two errors in each set.
Set 3 – FSU 26, USM 24
The Golden Eagles cut down on errors in the first half of the set, avoiding offensive errors for the first half to see the best hitting percentage of any of the three sets played.
While the Seminoles held the advantage throughout the set, USM went on a 6-1 run to take the lead for the first time at 23-21. A service error helped the Seminoles close the gap to just a point, but another kill for the Golden Eagles gave USM set point. Caffrey went on a run, picking up two kills and teaming up with Knuth for a block, to stop the Eagles and take the set 26-24.
Set 1 – FSU 25, FAMU 22
Despite picking up a few hitting and service errors in the beginning, Florida State was able to put down 14 kills in the first set to hit .312 to start the match. The Seminoles’ tough offensive effort was led by three players who picked up multiple kills without an error in the set – Ambrose, Murray and Williams.
While FAMU saw its best offensive effort in the first set, Ambrose, Caffrey and Williams teamed up with Knuth to put up three blocks in the set, holding the Rattlers down to keep the lead throughout the set.
Set 2 – FSU 25, FAMU 16
Reducing service errors helped FSU close out the second set faster than the first, and a more efficient offense kept the Seminoles in the lead in the set. Knuth led the defense in the front row again, assisting in three total blocks, while Wicinski led the back row with four digs in the set to keep the Rattlers to under .100 hitting.
Set 3 – FSU 25, FAMU 15
Florida State closed out the final set in a fitting way, hitting .500 with 19 kills and only two errors to close out the most efficient matches the team has seen so far this season. While the Rattlers took more swings and saw fewer attack errors, Knuth’s two solo blocks and the team’s 17 digs – led by Wicinski’s seven – kept the Rattlers to a low attack percentage and pushed the team to a quick 3-0 win.
The Seminoles’ three All-Tournament Team selections – Ambrose, Murray and Caffrey – all picked up multiple kills without registering a single error in the final set.
Saturday, Sept. 8
11:30 am – FSU vs. Southern Miss (at FSU) – FSU 3-0
11:30 am – FAMU vs. VCU (at FAMU) – VCU 3-1
4:30 pm – VCU vs. Southern Miss (at FAMU) – VCU 3-0
7:00 pm – FSU vs. FAMU (at FAMU) – FSU 3-0
Ashley Murray – FSU
Christina Ambrose – FSU
Payton Caffrey – FSU
Jasmin Sneed – VCU
Paula Necipouruka – VCU
Sarah Bell – USM
Maria Garcia – FAMU
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