ESTERO, Fla. – In the final dual match of the season, the FGCU sand volleyball team’s match with Grand Canyon University came down to the third set of the final match at the Estero Community Park. The Eagles were slightly edged with a two-point loss in the third set of the decisive match to drop a 3-2 decision. With the loss, the Eagles fall to 2-16 on the season, while the Antelopes improve to 7-3.
The Eagles earned wins at the no. 5 and no. 3 positions but fell at the no. 4, no. 1 and finally no. 2 spots.
Madi Wilcox (Mundelein, Ill./Mundelein High School) and Marlene Moeller (Ludinghausen, Germany/Pascal Gymnasium) earned the Eagles’ first win of the day with a three-set victory. The duo fell in set one, 21-18, before knotting the match with a 21-19 victory in the set two. Moeller and Wilcox carried the momentum into the third set and sealed a win with a 15-8 victory.
The no. 3 of Karina Mambuca (Naples, Fla./Gulf Coast High School) and Vanessa Benke (Toledo, Brazil/College of Central Florida) earned a two-set win to even the score for the Eagles after the home team fell in the no. 4 and no. 1 pairings. Benke and Mambuca won by scores of 21-14 and 21-19.
In the deciding match at no. 2, Elenora Kazarian (Tibilisi, Georgia/College of Central Florida) and Caroline Jordan (Orlando, Fla./William R. Boone High School) fought the Lopes to extra points in the third set. The duo earned a 21-18 win in set one before falling 21-18 in the second set.
The pair took an early 9-3 lead in the third set but saw as the visiting team chased them to a tie late in the set. The teams tied on each point between 13 and 17, with neither team taking more than a one-point lead. With the score knotted at 17, Grand Canyon produced two-consecutive points to earn the set and match victory. The win decided the overall match for the teams as Grand Canyon took the 3-2 victory.
The Eagles will conclude the 2014 regular season at the Fiesta on Siesta Tournament this weekend. The event is the largest collegiate sand volleyball tournament of the season and boasts 32 teams. The two-day event will feature pool play with six FGCU pairs competing.
Following the weekend, the Eagles will return to Fort Myers to host the 2014 Atlantic Sun Tournament Friday, April 18 and Saturday, April 19. The team will welcome the other four A-Sun teams and will compete as the no. 5 seed.
Grand Canyon 3 FGCU 2
1. Kenzie Phelps/Kelli Dallmann (GCU) def. Kaitlin Holm/Whitney Masters (FGCU) 21-13, 21-14
2. Shannon Dugan/Megan Glennie (GCU) def. Elenora Kazarian/Caroline Jordan (FGCU) 18-21, 21-18, 19-17
3. Karina Mambuca/Vanessa Benke (FGCU) def. Chloe Jenkins/Kami Dickerson (GCU) 21-14, 21-19
4. Kaitlynn Ausmus/Alex Goodman (GCU) def. Olivia Mesner/Shelby Joslin (FGCU) 21-11, 21-15
5. Marlene Moeller/Madi Wilcox (FGCU) def. Britta Forsythe/Brandy Grant (GCU) 18-21, 21-19, 15-8
Ext. Brooke Razo/Kaylee Dombroski (GCU) def. Katie Gutmann/Ashley Baker (FGCU) 23-21, 21-11