Sand Volleyball Continues Action at Stetson Pairs Tournament
Saturday, March 08, 2014 | by Jamie Church (@jlchurch)
Masters and Holm led the Eagles at the Pairs Tournament with three wins
Masters and Holm led the Eagles at the Pairs Tournament with three wins

DeLAND, Fla. – The FGCU sand volleyball team continued the 2014 season with the Stetson Pairs Tournament Saturday at the Stetson Sand Courts.  The Eagles saw a strong performance from Kaitlin Holm (Fort Myers, Fla./Fort Myers High School) and Whitney Masters (Muncie, Ind./Wahahani High School), who reached the consolation bracket final in the top division of the tournament.

“The girls all played hard for it being their first weekend of competition,” said assistant coach Holly Herbers. “Our first seeded pair was able to make it pretty far in the tournament, so I was very pleased with that. Overall the girls did great as a team and we now know more of what we can work on in the upcoming days to improve.”

Holm and Masters picked up a win in their first match of the day against Grace Weaver and Annie Shurtz of Tulane University.  Holm and Masters earned a win 21-18, 21-16 to advance in the double-elimination tournament. 

The duo fell to Kaley Melville and Kaylee Anderson of Stetson University in three sets in their next match.  The team won the first set 21-19 but fell 21-17, 15-10 to drop to the consolation bracket.  In their next match, Holm and Masters defeated Tiffani Pate and Brittany Showalter of Warner, 21-15, 21-15 to advance.

In the consolation bracket semifinal, Holm and Masters defeated another pair from Stetson in three sets.  They fell in the first set, 21-17 but bounced back with a 21-13, 15-11 win to move on to the finals.  In the consolation bracket finals, Holm and Masters fell 21-15, 21-11 to Tea Juric and Jackie Wegner of Tulane.  Juric and Wegner went on to defeat Melville and Anderson twice to win the upper division crown.

The Eagles’ no. 2 pair of Karina Mambuca (Naples, Fla./Gulf Coast High School) and freshman Caroline Jordan (Orlando, Fla./William R. Boone High School) also played in the upper division.  Mambuca and Jordan fell to Melville and Anderson 21-13, 21-13 in their first match and dropped a close game to Tulane’s Weaver and Shurtz, 21-18, 21-16 in their second match.

The Eagles saw less success in the lower division as each of the team’s four pairs fell in the single-elimination portion of the tournament.

Katie Gutmann (Coconut Creek, Fla./Monarch High School) and Ashley Baker (Estero, Fla./Estero High School) fell to Rachel Meiner and Rachel Stanton of Warner University, 28-17 in the Eagles’ first single-elimination match of the day.

In the second match of the lower division Madi Wilcox (Mundelein, Ill./Mundelein High School) and Marlene Moeller (Ludinghausen, Germany/Pascal Gymnasium) fell to Tiffany Creamer and Kristin Lind of Stetson, 28-10 before Elenora Kazarian (Tibilisi, Georgia/College of Central Florida) and Vanessa Benke (Toledo, Brazil/College of Central Florida) dropped a match 31-29 to Erika White and Kendale Speyerer of Stetson.

Olivia Mesner (Boca Raton, Fla./Spanish River High School) and Shelby Joslin (Alva, Fla./Evangelical Christian High School) rounded out the tournament appearance with a 28-21 loss to Maren Rygh and Jordann Dierickx of Stetson.

Creamer and Lind eventually earned the lower division crown.

The Eagles will travel return to Fort Myers to take on Florida Atlantic University on Tuesday, March 18 before returning to DeLand to face Jacksonville and Stetson the weekend of March 21-22.