Meyers' Career Night Not Enough as Eagles Fall to Miami (OH), 3-2
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|Stats at a Glance||FGCU||MIAMI|
VISK - 3
OXFORD, Ohio – The Florida Gulf Coast University volleyball team dropped a hard-fought match on day one of the Miami Invitational Friday night with a 3-2 (24-26, 25-19, 25-23, 23-25, 14-16) loss to tournament host Miami (OH). Freshman setter Gigi Meyer (Gainesville, Fla./Buchholz HS) led the Eagles with her first career double-double, with 52 assists and 12 digs. With the loss the FGCU falls to 2-5 on the season, while the Redhawks improve to 6-2.
Miami took control early in set one, after a pair of kills from Amy Raseman helped the RedHawks jump out to a 6-2 advantage. A 7-3 run by FGCU, highlighted by a trio of kills from sophomore Kaitlin Holm (Fort Myers, Fla./Fort Myers HS/Marshall), would quickly tie the set at nine. Freshman Jill Hopper (Muncie, Ind./Yorktown HS) had three kills as the two teams traded points until the set was tied at 17. With the game tied at 21, Miami scored on a service error and a block and the Eagles had an attack error to give the Redhawks set point (24-21). The Green and Blue did not fold, scoring the next three points, two coming from service aces from sophomore Jessica Barnes (Winter Haven, Fla./Haines City HS), to tie the score at 24. Miami went on to take the set 26-24 after picking up a kill from Amy Raseman and a block from Chelsea Visk and Amy Kendall.
The Green and Blue came back to capture the second set 25-19. A kill from Holm gave the Eagles a 17-13 lead. After a kill from Lisa Treadway, the Eagles used a 3-0 run to extend their lead to 20-14. FGCU went on to hold off the Redhawks and pick up the 25-19 set win after Hopper blasted a kill.
The Eagles jumped out to a big lead in set three at 14-9. Trailing 18-13, Miami employed a 6-1 run to even the score at 19. The teams traded the next eight points until the game was tied 23-23, which was the ninth tie of the set. FGCU was able to force an attack error and Holm put down a kill to give the Eagles to 25-23 win in the set and a 2-1 advantage in the match.
With their backs against the wall, Miami went ahead 9-7 to being set four. The Eagles clawed their way back to tie the set at 15-15. With the score knotted at 19, freshman Olivia Mesner (Boca Raton, Fla./Spanish River HS) and junior Brittany Muse (Arcadia, Fla./DeSoto County HS) recorded kills to give FGCU a 21-19 lead and force a Miami timeout. Trailing 22-20, the Redhawks got kills from Jenn Caylor and Christina Menche to force FGCU head coach Dave Nichols to burn a timeout. After the break Menche scored another kill, while an Eagle attack error gave Miami set point. The Green and Blue were able to pull within one point at 24-23, but Cassie Farrell was able to find the edge of the backline on her attack to record the winning kill and force a decisive set five with a 25-23 victory.
FGCU took a 3-0 advantage to begin the fifth and final set. Two kills from Miami’s Amy Raseman ignited a 5-2 run the tied the set at 5-5. The Green and Blue responded with a 5-2 run of their own, highlighted by kills from Mesner, Holm and redshirt-senior Jelena Simic (Lazarevac, Serbia/Kolubara Technical/Seward County CC), to take a 10-7 lead and force a RedHawk timeout. Tied at 10-10, FGCU scored the next two points, but a pair of kills and a block from Miami gave the Redhawks their first lead of the set at 13-12. The teams traded points to give Miami match point at 14-13, but as they had done all night, the Green and Blue fought it off as Holm picked up a kill to even the game at 14-14. The Redhawks would go on to score the final to points to win the fifth set 16-14 and the match 3-2.
Holm recorded a career-high 19 kills and picked up a pair of blocks. In addition to her first career double-double (52 assists, 12 digs), Meyer added a kills and registered a .957 serve percentage. Hopper finished with 11 kills, three digs and three blocks, while the trio of Mesner, Muse and Simic each blasted nine kills for the match. Miami hit .222, while the Eagles were held to a .185 hitting percentage.
The Green and Blue complete play at the Miami Invitational with a pair of matches Saturday. They will take on Alabama A&M at 12:30 p.m. and wrapup the tournament against Radford at 5 p.m. Live stats for both games can be found at MURedhawks.com.
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