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Friday October 26, 2001Gator Volleyball Remains Perfect In SEC Play

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark.

The final two undefeated teams in the SEC met at Barnhill Arena this evening in Fayetteville, Ark. The ninth-ranked Florida Gators and the Arkansas Lady Razorbacks came into tonight with unblemished records in the conference, but it was UF that escaped with the win and kept their perfect SEC record intact. The Gators outlasted the Razorbacks tonight 3-0 (31-29, 30-19, 30-21).

Aury Cruz recorded double-digit kills for the 20th straight match with 15 kills. Nicole McCray and Niki Hartley also hit double digits in the kill column. Kris Bova assisted on 49 Gator kills. Cruz also added five service aces, three in the second game alone. The Gators outblocked their opponent for the 14th straight match with a 9-4 advantage in tonight's match.

Florida and Arkansas exchanged a number of points in the first game before Cruz's third kill of the match, Robinson's second kill and Niki Hartley's second kill gave UF an 11-7 lead forcing Arkansas to call a time out. Florida extended its lead to 15-11 before the Razorbacks came back to make it 15-14. Cruz put an end to the run with a kill down the middle. Arkansas tied the game two points later and took a 17-16 lead before Florida called its first time out. The Razorbacks had a 20-17 lead before Benavia Jenkins and Cruz killed balls to pull the Gators to within one. With the game tied at 24, Arkansas took a lead off a UF service error. The Gators then took a lead after back-to-back kills by Cruz. Florida took a 27-25 lead off a Hartley kill. Florida earned its first game point after a Arkansas service error. The Razorbacks came back to tie the game at 29, after which Florida called another time out. Lauren Moscovic served up an ace to end the first game as the Gators won 31-29.

Cruz opened the scoring in the second game with a block and a kill. The Gators registered two kills and another block to extend to a 5-0 lead when Arkansas called a time out. Kris Bova's second kill of the game gave the Gators a 6-0 lead. Robinson killed a ball and Cruz served up an ace to make the score 11-4 in favor of the Gators. McCray served up her 16th ace of the season, followed by a block by Bova and Jenkins. After that, Florida had a 17-8 lead, forcing Arkansas to call its second time out of the game. Jenkins killed another attack and Cruz served up two straight aces to give the Gators a 21-11 advantage. With the score 25-16, Florida ended the second game by winning five of the final eight points to take the game 30-19.

Florida started the second game with a 6-4 advantage. McCray and Jenkins contributed to the lead that was extended to 10-7. Arkansas trimmed that lead to 10-9 and tied it at 10 after two offensive errors by the Gators. Arkansas called a time out wit the score 13-10 in favor of Florida. Coming out of the time out, Florida won the next two points to take a 15-10 lead. After the Gators won six of the next 10 points and had a 21-14 advantage, the Razorbacks called their second time out of the game. Florida took advantage of its second match point as Arkansas never threatened in the third game.

Florida returns to action on Monday in a non-conference match with Louisville at 8:30 pm in the O'Connell Center. The match will be televised by the Sunshine Network and will be used as a prototype for a National Game of the Week. The telecast will feature additional camera angles, a sideline reporter and coaches with microphones. Larry Vettel and Phil Bush will handle the play-by-play and color commentary with Steve Babik reporting from the sidelines. The match will also be broadcast on WRUF-AM 850 and Gatorzone.com.

End of Report

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