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Saturday, January 28, 2023
<p>Setter Marlie Monserez recorded 30 assists Friday night, the eighth time she's had at least that many this season.</p>

Setter Marlie Monserez recorded 30 assists Friday night, the eighth time she's had at least that many this season.

The saying goes that the beginning of conference play is like the beginning of a new season, that you’re starting with a clean slate.

If anything, though, the Gators just picked up from where they left off, as UF completely overwhelmed Auburn on Friday night in its SEC opener. 

Florida extended its winning streak to eight matches in a row with the 3-0 win. Six of the last seven victories have been sweeps. 

The Gators (10-2, 1-0 SEC) ran away with the first set 25-12, and it wasn’t even as close as the score suggests. UF raced out to a 13-3 lead early on and led by as much as 15 to grab the first frame. 

Auburn’s biggest problem was itself. It committed more attack errors (19) than it had kills in the match (16). Seven of those came in the first frame, as well as five service errors. 

Comparatively, Florida committed only six errors the entire match and was more than content to let the Tigers (6-6, 0-1 SEC) beat themselves. 

In the second set, Auburn hung with Florida during the first half. The Tigers only trailed 14-11 after a service error by Gators outside hitter Holly Carlton. However, UF went on an 8-2 run to essentially put the set out of reach.

Auburn scored five of the set’s last eight points to once again make the score closer than it actually was. It cut down on the errors, but couldn’t prevent the Gators from scoring at will, as they hit a lethal .536 in the set. 

The Tigers practically handed Florida the third set as well. Auburn registered 13 total errors in the frame and logged only six kills. Defensively, the Tigers crumbled, as the Gators completed the sweep with another 25-12 win. 

Sophomore Thayer Hall led the Gators in kills with 14, and Carlton tallied four service aces in the match. Setter Marlie Monserez recorded her eighth match this season with at least 30 assists. 

Contact Brendan Farrell at bfarrell@alligator.org and follow him on Twitter @Bfarrell727.

Setter Marlie Monserez recorded 30 assists Friday night, the eighth time she's had at least that many this season.

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