Wednesday September 1, 1999Volleyball Senior Lights Up Hometown in Win
Florida's Jenny Manz (Orange Park, Fla./Middleburg) pounded a match-high 19 kills to lead the eighth-ranked Gators in a 3-0 sweep of instate rival Jacksonville at Swisher Gymnasium Wednesday night.
Playing in front of her hometown crowd, the senior All-American posted a season-high .571 hitting efficiency (19-3-28) and added five digs, two blocks, and an ace as Florida (2-1, 0-0 Southeastern Conference) notched its best offensive performance this season. The Gators finished with a .466 hitting percentage in the 15-3, 15-9, 15-9 win. The Dolphins (0-1, 0-0 Trans American Athletic) responded with a .246 in their season-opener.
The teams were meeting for the first time since 1995, and the Gators improved their all-time record to 12-0 over the Dolphins. Florida made it look easy in game one as they took a 9-3 lead, to which JU could not respond. But despite a match-best, second-game .581 Gator offensive efficiency, the Dolphins battled back from a 14-5 deficit. Jacksonville served up four unanswered points before Florida could seal the win.
In game three, Jacksonville combined for a team-best .389 hitting effort, but it was its serving that gave Florida the most trouble. With the help of the Dolphins' jump server Carrie Arago, who tallied four aces and led JU with 10 kills, Jacksonville tied the score four times and took a one-point lead for the first time in the match.
"They kept it close with their serving," Coach Mary Wise said. "They made themselves much larger with their serving."
Florida's Nicole McCary (Longview, Texas/Pine Tree) led all hitters with a .600 efficiency. The redshirt freshman recorded seven kills and only one error on 10 attempts while adding five digs and two blocks.
On the match, Florida also out-dug and out-blocked Jacksonville 39-29 and 6-3, respectively.
The Gators open their home season with the SunTrust Invitational Sept. 4-5 in the Stephen C. O'Connell Center. Florida will take on Iowa Saturday at 10 a.m. and Western Michigan at 4 p.m. For tickets call 1-800-34-Gator (In Florida only) or (352) 375-GoUF.