Sept. 11, 2009
UCF 3, High Point 1 |
UCF 3, UNC Greensboro 2
GREENSBORO, N.C. (UCFAthletics.com) - The UCF (8-2) volleyball team battled back from two sets down to claim a thrilling come-from-behind, five-set (14-25, 14-25, 25-23, 25-21, 15-9) victory over UNC Greensboro Friday night at Fleming Gymnasium to cap off its end-of-the-week doubleheader. The Knights opened the two-match event with a, 3-1 (25-21, 25-19, 19-25, 25-23), victory over High Point earlier in the day.
"I have been around college volleyball for 15 years and that was the greatest comeback I have ever been apart of," head coach Todd Dagenais said following the match against the Spartans. "Even though the execution was subpar, the heart and the desire were tenfold more than what we needed. It may not have been there in the first two sets, but it really came through in the end when we needed it the most."
Senior Erin Campbell (Kansas City, Mo.) finished the night with a pair of double-doubles to lead the Black and Gold offensively, registering 11 kills and 16 digs against the Panthers (7-3), and 16 kills and 22 digs against the host Spartans (4-5).
"I thought that Erin did a fantastic job on defense tonight," Dagenais said. "She had to carry a lot of the work on the attacking end and it would have been easy for her to take a break in the back row, but she never did. It was really a gutsy, gritty performance by her."
Sophomore Kristin Fisher (Clearwater, Fla.) and freshman Evija Vilde (Riga, Latvia) also strung together solid all-around performances for the Black and Gold. Fisher concluded the doubleheader with 23 kills, 11 digs and two blocks, while Vilde posted 16 kills, 20 digs, five blocks and two service aces. The freshman also registered her first career double-double in the nightcap with 10 kills and 10 digs.
Libero Meredith Murphy
(Austin, Texas) continued to be consistent for UCF in the backcourt, tallying 45 digs in the pair of contests. The freshman has now posted double-digit dig performances in seven-straight matches.
Helping Murphy out defensively was sophomore Sara Rex (Oldsmar, Fla.), who had seven blocks on the night, which included three block solos.
Game Two vs. UNC Greensboro
After falling down two sets to the host Spartans in the nightcap of Friday's doubleheader, UCF geared up in the third set for what would eventually become a monumental comeback on the road. With the score knotted 11-11 close to the midway point of the set, kills from Vilde and Brittanie Wallace (Austin, Texas), and a Spartan attack error, gave the Knights a 14-11 cushion. The home team kept creeping back into the set, before the two squads traded scores through the next 13 points. UNCG would even the match twice toward the end, lastly at 23-23, but back-to-back kills from Vilde and Campbell gave the Knights the win and kept them alive in the match.
UCF took the momentum from the third set into the fourth, storming out to a 13-7 lead after going on a 5-0 run behind the serving of Campbell. The Spartans answered back with an 11-5 run to even the score, 18-18, but a pair of kills from Lauren Williams (Lake Mary, Fla.), a kill from Fisher and a service ace from Rex pushed the Knights past the home team and into a decisive-fifth set.
With the match on the line, the two teams battled to seven ties through the first 16 points, before a late surge of tenacity and heart guided the Black and Gold on a 7-1 run to win the set and close the book on an amazing comeback story.
Game One vs. High Point
In the Knights' opening match against High Point, Campbell posted her first double-double of the day, and her third-straight, after tallying 11 kills and 16 digs, while Fisher registered a match-high 15 kills.
Besides Campbell, three additional Knights had double-digit dig performances. Murphy recorded a team-best 19 digs, Kristen Petrasic (Carrollton, Texas) had 13 and Vilde added 10.
UCF struggled to get its offense rolling to open the match, posting only eight kills in the opening set. But, High Point committed 15 errors during the game to help the visiting Knights' to the opening-set victory.
After winning the second set, errors came back to haunt the Knights in set No. 3, as nine attack errors and only nine kills were not enough to get the sweep of the Panthers. But, the Black and Gold regrouped in the fourth set behind a seven-kill performance from Fisher, and a match-best 16 team kills, to win final set and the match.
The Knights are back in action Sept. 15 when they host USF in VolleyBowl II at The Venue at UCF. The first 1,000 UCF students to the match, which is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m., will receive a guaranteed ticket to the UCF-Miami football game on Oct. 17 at Bright House Networks Stadium.
Season tickets for the 2009 season are still available for only $30, with the Knights hosting 13 more regular-season matches at The Venue at UCF this year.
For the latest news on the Knights, log on to www.UCFAthletics.com - the official site for UCF varsity sports. The site, which also contains ticket and Golden Knights Club donor information, is also the home of UCF's new online apparel store. Also visit www.UCFPhotos.com, the exclusive fan source for UCF action sports pictures.