Kentucky Falls to Central Florida, 3-1, in Thanksgiving Tournament
Nov. 29, 2002
ORLANDO, Fla. - The University of Kentucky volleyball team dropped a close match to Central Florida, 3-1, on Saturday, Nov. 29 at the UCF Thanksgiving Tournament in Orlando, Fla. It was the fifth loss in a row for the Wildcats, dropping them to 13-17 on the season.
Leading the Kentucky charge was Florida native Sarah Spinner, who threw down 16 kills while collecting 18 digs for her 13th double-double of the season. Setter Kristi Kelley also performed well, recording 44 assists and 12 digs on the night.
UK opened with an exciting start, taking the first game by a score of 30-26 after trailing by as many as four early. After opening the game with several ties, UCF took the lead at 7-6, an advantage the Knights would hold until UK tied it again at 16. Central Florida was able to tie the match again at 21, but Kentucky used a timeout and returned with a 4-0 run to keep the Knights at bay.
The Golden Knights opened game two by taking the first point and never looked back, dominating UK throughout. UCF led by as many as 13 at 23-10, but the Cats managed to sneak away few points down the stretch in the 30-15 loss.
After seeing three early ties, Kentucky broke out to an 11-7 lead in the third game. After extending the lead to five at 15-10, UCF called a timeout. The Wildcats maintained their distance after the break for a bit before the Knights cut it to one at 23-22, forcing the Cats to talk it over. UK maintained its narrow advantage until UCF, down 28-27, used a 3-0 run to close out the game with a 30-28 win to take a 2-1 lead in the match.
UK led 6-2 early in the fourth game before UCF came alive to tie the game at 11, forcing a Wildcat timeout. After three more ties, Central Florida built a small lead at 22-18, forcing another UK timeout. The Knights stretched the lead to five at 26-21 before the Cats began to chip away. Two quick UK points, including an ace by Spinner, cut the lead to three at 26-23, scaring the UCF bench into burning a timeout.
Spinner ripped off another ace immediately and a block by Anne Koester and Amy Kaplan cut the lead to one at 26-25. Kentucky, however, couldn't place the ball on the floor in Knight territory again, as UCF won the match with a 5-0 run for the 30-25 game-win. The UK-UCF series is now tied at two games.
Kentucky returns to action on Saturday, Nov. 30, when the Wildcats face Houston at 4:30 p.m., in the final day of the UCF Thanksgiving Tournament.