Barnes' 20 Kills Leads FGCU over USC Upstate, 3-1
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FORT MYERS, Fla. – Sophomore Jessica Barnes (Winter Haven, Fla./Haines City HS) recorded career-highs in kills (20) and digs (7) as the FGCU volleyball squad defeated USC Upstate, 3-1 (26-28, 25-22, 25-11, 25-22), Friday night at Alico Arena.
With the win the Eagles improve to 11-8 overall (5-1 A-Sun), while the Spartans fall to 6-12 on the season (2-4 A-Sun).
Barnes hit .471 and tallied a pair service aces as she recorded double digit kills for the first time this season. Freshman Jill Hopper (Muncie, Ind./Yorktown HS) finished with a .343 hitting percentage to go with 15 kills and nine digs. Senior Jelena Simic (Lazarevac, Serbia/Kolubara Technical/Seward County CC) picked up her fifth double-double of the season with 14 kills and a match-high 16 digs. Junior Brooke Kohler (Jupiter, Fla./Jupiter HS/Clemson), who hit .368 for the match, recorded season-highs with nine kills and six blocks. Freshman setter Gigi Meyer (Gainesville, Fla./Buchholz HS) tied her career-high with 52 assists and senior libero Holly Youngquist (Estero, Fla./Evangelical Christian HS) chipped in with 11 digs and eight assists.
Mindy Quimby recorded 12 kills to lead the Spartans. Emily Sanders added 32 assists and 10 digs for Upstate.
After dropping a highly contested first set 28-26, the Eagles jumped out to a 13-10 lead early in the second game and never looked back as they went on to win the set 25-22.
FGCU rode the momentum of the second set win to grab an early 10-5 lead in the third set. Following an Upstate timeout, the Eagles continued to push ahead as they scored eight of the next 10 points to take an 18-7 advantage. The Spartans tried to stop the Green and Blue’s momentum by calling a timeout, but the Eagles went on to outscore Upstate, 7-4, to claim the set, 25-11.
In the fourth set the two teams battled to a 16-16 tie, before FGCU used a 9-6 spurt to take the set, 25-22, and the match, 3-1. Four kills from Barnes highlighted the Green and Blue’s run.
The Eagles finish the weekend tomorrow by hosting ETSU (10-11, 3-3 A-Sun) at 7 p.m. at Alico Arena. Live stats for the match will be available on www.FGCUAthletics.com.
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