After a thrilling third-set comeback jolted the crowd of 3,361 out of its seats, junior libero Elli McKissock put the cherry on top with a service ace. No. 10 Florida avenged last year’s three-set loss in Lexington with a sweep of the No. 18 Wildcats at the Stephen C. O’Connell Center Saturday afternoon.
Ethan Eibe is a second-year UF sports media major and covers Gators volleyball for The Alligator. Outside of his writing, Ethan is a play-by-play broadcaster for UF student radio and has spent two summers announcing professional baseball with the Alpine Cowboys. He is a long-suffering Miami Marlins fan.
“I have to do this. I have to go back. So, here I am.” Caroline Knop could not refuse Mary Wise’s offer to return to UF as her volunteer assistant coach. This season “CK” has become an integral part of Wise’s staff as Florida builds up its young squad.
After a sluggish start where Arkansas owned the opening frame, No.14 Florida outlasted the Razorbacks in five sets. The Gators had three players record double-digit kills, with senior outside hitter Marina Markova leading the group with 17. Junior outside hitter Sofia Victoria tied her season-high with 16 and sophomore outside hitter Merritt Beason tallied 12.
No. 14 Florida’s three set sweep (25-20, 25-20, 25-21) over Arkansas at the Stephen C. O’Connell Center Saturday afternoon kept UF atop the Southeastern Conference standings. The Gators are now 23-0 all-time against the Razorbacks at the O'Dome.
For a moment Sunday afternoon, it seemed the Louisiana State Tigers had solved the riddle of the Florida Gators. Down two sets to none, the Tigers stormed back to force a winner-take-all fifth set. The No. 15 Gators claimed the 15-point finale to win their second game of the weekend (25-18, 26-24, 25-27, 21-25, 15-9) against LSU.
The Florida faithful still packed the house to the tune of 3,584 to watch their No. 15 Gators defeat the Louisiana State Tigers three sets to one (25-18, 23-25, 25-19, 27-25) Saturday evening. Head coach Mary Wise said it’s the first home match played on a homecoming Saturday in at least 33 years.
South Carolina snapped Florida’s seven game winning streak in five sets (25-20, 21-25, 25-17, 22-25, 7-15) with a Sunday matinee comeback win at the Carolina Volleyball Center in Columbia, South Carolina. It is Florida’s first loss in Southeastern Conference play and a tough blow for a squad that was one set away from a weekend sweep.
Florida volleyball extended its winning streak to six games and kicked off Southeastern Conference play with a sweep of Alabama at the Stephen C. O’Connell Center Wednesday night. The Gators moved to 51-0 all-time against the Crimson Tide, with 47 of those wins coming in straight sets.
The No.16 Gators completed multiple comebacks to sweep the Florida State Seminoles in front of a rowdy crowd Tuesday night. Florida will now prepare for an away match at No. 4 Wisconsin Friday night.
Florida volleyball completed its doubleheader sweep of Georgia Southern and Florida Gulf Coast Friday night without the help of star outside hitter Merritt Beason. Gators head coach Mary did not provide a timetable for Beason’s return.