No. 8 Florida Too Much For Wildcats
Eighth-ranked Florida used a .333 hitting percentage to defeat the Kentucky volleyball team, 3-0, Sunday at Memorial Coliseum. The Wildcats, who hit .171 in the match, fell to 10-7 on the season and 1-5 in the Southeastern Conference with the loss after being swept for only the third time this year.
The Wildcats were led by outside hitter Sarah Spinner with 14 kills on .286 hitting. Amy Kaplan hit a team-best .375 on the afternoon with six kills, while outside Alex Montefalco had a team-high nine digs to go with eight kills against the Gators (14-2, 6-0 SEC).
Florida opened the match with a strong offensive attack, pulling to a 7-2 lead early in the match after the Gators’ Angie McGinnis and Sherri Williams teamed up for a block and forced UK coach Jona Braden to call an early timeout.
Kentucky cut the lead to four, 15-11 when an impressive backset by Ki Eveland resulted in a Danielle Wallace kill. The Gators gained momentum out of a timeout and extended their advantage to 27-19 after Williams registered a kill and then teamed with Marcie Hampton for a block. Florida secured a 30-21 win in the opening game with a kill by Jane Collymore.
The Wildcats led 3-0 early in the second game before Florida tied the game at six and then again at eight. Eveland found Kaplan in the middle for a kill to break the tie at 9-8. However, three kills by the Gators and an attack error by Wallace allowed Florida to take an 18-13 lead going into a Kentucky timeout. UK later narrowed the advantage to three, 22-19, when Montefalco found the floor and Florida’s Kisya Killingsworth made an errant attack. Three consecutive Florida kills gave the Gators the second game, 30-18. The Wildcats hit a meager .067 in game two, while the Gators hit .300.
Florida appeared as if it would make quick work of the Wildcats after breaking out to a 13-7 lead in the third game, but after back-to-back kills by Montefalco and Spinner, UK cut the advantage to four, 13-9. The Gators extended their lead to 19-12 following a service error by Spinner. Florida took its largest advantage at 25-16 before a kill by Kaplan down the middle ended the Cats’ scoring drought. But that would be as close as Kentucky would come, losing the third game 30-21.
Kentucky returns to action on Friday, October 15 when it hosts Mississippi State at Memorial Coliseum. Opening serve is set for 7:30 p.m. and the match will be televised live on Fox Sports Net South. It marks the Wildcats’ first regional television appearance since the 2002 season.
Fans can follow all of the action with live stats on www.ukathletics.com.