Sunday September 26, 2010No. 3 Gators Sweep Ole Miss
Florida’s Cassandra Anderson (Bakersfield, Calif.) and Tangerine Wiggs (Seattle, Wash.) combined for 16 kills on .615 hitting and five blocks to direct a balanced offensive attack that led the No. 3 Gators to a 3-0 (25-18, 25-19, 25-19) win against Ole Miss on Sunday in the Stephen C. O’Connell Center.
The Gators (10-1, 3-0 Southeastern Conference), who posted their fifth consecutive victory, hit .338 as a team, while limiting Ole Miss to just a .140 hitting percentage. Florida, characteristically, utilized a balanced offensive attack that featured six players with five or more kills apiece.
“To beat a team that was 3-0 in the conference and had won seven straight really speaks well for our production today,” Florida head coach Mary Wise said. “We only hit two balls out of bounds in 85 swings – that’s pretty stellar offense. I felt like there are some areas in which we are going to have to get much better before we play Ole Miss in Oxford in a month, but I trust that we will do that.”
Wiggs led the Gators offensively with nine kills on 16 swings with no errors for a .562 hitting efficiency to complement two blocks for a match-high 10.0 points. It was Wiggs’ second consecutive match without an error and her third errorless match this season.
“Tangerine has a length and a contact point that’s pretty difficult to defend because she’s so long,” Wise said. “She is getting much better in terms of expanding her hitting window – and we’re just scratching the surface there. I think Tangerine has got the ability where she’s going to be able to get kills at lots of different tempos from antenna to antenna. And, with her length, that could be really hard to guard.”
Anderson also was errorless in the match with seven kills on 10 swings for a .700 hitting efficiency with three blocks. For Anderson, it was her third consecutive match with no errors and her fourth errorless match of the season.
“I think the story of the match is Cassandra Anderson,” Wise said. “This is her third match in a row without a hitting error. The analogy would be like that of a baseball player who just goes on a tear, and that’s what Cass has done these last three matches.”
Senior outside hitter Callie Rivers (Winter Park, Fla.) led the team’s defensive effort with 10 digs to complement seven kills on .375 hitting, while junior right-side/setter Kelly Murphy (Wilmington, Ill.) charted six kills, a team-high 18 assists and five digs to go along with two blocks.
Junior outside hitter Kristy Jaeckel (Littleton, Colo.) and senior middle blocker Lauren Bledsoe (Long Beach, Calif.) each added five kills, while Bledsoe posted a match-high four blocks.
libero Erin Fleming (Orlando, Fla.) charted nine digs, while freshman
setter Chanel Brown (Tempe, Ariz.) contributed 16 assists.
The Gators and the Rebels traded points to start the match until a Murphy ace gave the Gators their first lead at 5-4. The teams traded points once again until the Gators took another lead at 8-6 on an attack error by Ole Miss’ Allegra Wells. An off-speed kill by Wiggs extended the Gators’ lead to 9-6. The first block of the match came when a rejection by Anderson and Wiggs forced the Rebels into a timeout at 11-8. A block by Bledsoe and Jaeckel and a kill by Rivers continued the Gators’ five-point lead. The largest lead of the set came at 23-16 after a long rally between the teams caused Wells to hit into the antenna. A Wells attacking error on set point gave the Gators the first set, 25-18.
Florida and Ole Miss traded points back and forth to open the second set until the Gators began a 5-1 run to go up 10-5, finishing with a huge block by Anderson and Rivers that landed untouched in the Ole Miss backcourt. A Jaeckel kill gave the Gators a 13-7 lead and forced the Rebels to take a timeout. The Gators then proceeded to go on another 5-1 run behind an off-speed kill by Wiggs and three consecutive Ole Miss errors to give Florida an 18-10 lead, marking the largest lead of the match for the Gators and forcing Ole Miss into its second timeout of the set.. Ole Miss started a 3-0 run before a Rebel service error put the Gators within two of the set, 23-17. A Stephanie Ferrell (Los Angeles, Calif.) kill brought set point for the Gators at 24-18. Bledsoe found a seam in the Ole Miss block as the Gators took the second set, 25-19.
A Rivers kill and an Anderson-Murphy block got things started for the Gators as they pulled out to a 2-0 lead in the third set. Ole Miss crept back and the teams continued to trade points and the lead, highlighted by a block from Murphy and Bledsoe at 12-11, and Florida began to pull away courtesy of a block by Anderson and Wiggs at 16-13. The Gators were the first to 20 with a Rivers ace to give Florida a four-point lead at 20-16, forcing the Rebels into a timeout. Behind the serve of Rivers, the Gators scored three consecutive, including two service aces. A Bledsoe-Jaeckel block gave the Gators match point at 24-17. A Bledsoe kill sealed the match for Florida, defeating the Rebels in set three, 25-19.
Ole Miss (9-4, 3-1 SEC), which suffered its first conference loss on Sunday, was led by eight kills apiece from Whitney Craven and Regina Thomas.
Florida returns to action on Friday when it plays host to No. 17 LSU on Friday. Opening serve is slated for 7 p.m. ET in the Stephen C. O’Connell Center and the match will be carried live on GatorVision Online and ROCK 104 (103.7 FM in Gainesville) with Tom Collett and Missy Whittemore.
For all of the latest information on Florida volleyball, please log on to www.GatorZone.com/volleyball. Follow Florida Volleyball on Twitter at www.twitter.com/GatorZoneVB and Coach Mary Wise on Twitter at www.twitter.com/GatorMary.
SEC VOLLEYBALL SCORES (SUNDAY, SEPT. 26, 2010)
No. 24 Kentucky 3, Georgia 2
No. 20 Tennessee 3, Auburn 1
No. 17 LSU 3, Mississippi State 0
Arkansas 3, Alabama 1