FORT MYERS, Fla. – The Jacksonville University volleyball team bounced back from its first loss of the season Wednesday at UCF to sweep Florida Gulf Coast, 3-0, Friday evening at Alico Arena.
With the Dolphins’ 25-20, 25-20, 25-19 victory – their first Atlantic Sun match of the season - the Dolphins improve to 10-1 to tie their total wins from last year (10-24). The Eagles fall to 1-10 and are on a five-game losing streak.
Gabriela Roman recorded a match-high 13 kills, had 22 total attacks and recorded a .500 attack percentage on the night. Taylor Nyquist matched FGCU’s Jessica Barnes with 10 kills, while Kylie Jacob had nine. In digs, Rachel Miller led with 13, Kendall Courtney had 11 and Sammie Strausbaugh tallied 10. Courtney took the top spot in assists with 41.
Christine Pinder headed FGCU with 11 kills, and behind Barnes, Olivia Mesner and Kaitlin Holm tied with six. Pinder and Barnes each fared well in total attacks too, with 34 and 29, respectively. Whitney Masters and Karina Mambuca both tallied 10 digs.
Jacksonville controlled the first set early on taking a 6-1 advantage before FGCU fought back to come within one at 11-10. JU then pushed to win six straight points on two kills and three attack errors for a 16-10 lead. It was back-and-forth before the Eagles won three points on two kills and an attack error for a 19-16 game. JU led the rest of the set. The Eagles scored three to come within 21-18 and each recorded two points until JU won 25-20.
Set two was much tighter with a tie straight away at 1-1 and each fighting to break away. Eventually JU won three straight to stand at 10-8 on a Jacob kill and Pinder and Holm attack errors. But soon FGCU capitalized on three JU errors and a Pinder kill to tie 13-13. The only other tie was 15-all before JU held the rest of the set to repeat 25-20.
In the final set, JU ran 4-1 on Alyssa Robertson, Jacob and Nyquist kills and a bad set by Masters. After two points by the Eagles, JU punched out to 8-3 before FGCU retaliated with four of its own to sit at 9-7. At 20-12 in JU’s favor, the Dolphins tallied five consecutive from 13-9 to 17-9. And although the final stretch was 8-5 from that 20-12 mark in FGCU’s court, Jacksonville won the final set 25-19, ending with a Jacob kill.
Jacksonville is back on the court Saturday at 3 p.m. at Stetson to finish its opening Atlantic Sun weekend.