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VB: NC State Falls to No. 11 Florida State, 3-0, For First ACC Home Loss of Season

Posted November 2, 2012

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— No. 11 Florida State handed NC State’s volleyball team its first ACC home loss of the season Friday night with a 3-0 sweep at Reynolds Coliseum.

The Pack (19-6 overall, 9-5 ACC) led throughout the first set and had its chances to end the Seminoles’ 25-match winning streak in the series, but Florida State’s front line was tough for the Pack to overcome.

“They’re a good team,” said NC State third-year head coach Bryan Bunn. “One of our strong points this year is holding opposing teams’ hitting percentages down.
“They hit over .300 against us, and that makes it hard to win.”

The Seminoles (22-2, 13-1) outhit the Pack .303 to .139 in the match and had a 12-5 advantage in team blocks. FSU was particularly strong in the second set, which it won 25-16 by hitting .481 as a team.

The Pack had won seven in a row at Reynolds Coliseum against league competition and was 14-1 overall at home until Friday’s loss.

Sophomore Alesha Wilson led the Wolfpack with 14 kills. Senior Megan Cyr had 32 assists and sophomore Alston Kearns had 13 digs.

FSU’s Ashley Neff and Fatma Yildirim led the Seminoles with nine kills apiece, with both hitting better than .380 on their attacks. Sareea Freeman had seven kills with a .636 hitting average.
In the opening set, the Wolfpack jumped out to an early 5-1 lead behind the strong play of Wilson and fellow sophomore Dariyan Hopper on the front line. FSU rallied, tying the set four times before taking its first lead on its 25th point of the set.

The Pack owned a 24-22 lead, but the Seminoles scored four straight on kills by Neff and Yildirim and a pair of attack errors by NC State.

“We came out and started the match very aggressively,” Bunn said. “We served the ball tough. We were very confident in our swings. But when things tightened up, we got a little bit tentative. We missed some serves, had a couple of hitting errors.

“We just got tight.”

In the second set, Florida State held the early lead until the Wolfpack scored four out of five points. Alexa Micek had the Pack’s first service ace of the match and Cyr followed with a soft kill to the middle of the court for an 11-8 lead.

The Seminoles scored four in a row on a Pack service error, a pair of blocks and a service ace. After a NC State timeout, Florida State scored seven in a row to take a 22-14 lead, and held on for a 25-16 win heading into the break.

In the third set, the Wolfpack used its strong service game to jump out to an early lead, beginning with back-to-back aces by Micek. Sophomores Hannah Thompson and Nikki Glass added two more, as the Pack led by as many as seven points midway through the set.

The Seminoles scored eight in a row to take its first lead of the set, 15-14, but the Wolfpack bounced back once the scoring run ended. It led 20-17 when the Seminoles started another streak, scoring four consecutive point to retake the lead an close out the match with a 25-21 win.

"We started off confidently, hitting the ball well and making some serves,” Bunn said. “Then as we got close to the end, we got tentative again. We didn’t play without any fear, which is always our goal.”

The Wolfpack returns to action on Sunday, when it hosts second-place Miami at 1 p.m. at Reynolds Coliseum. The game will be broadcast on ESPN3. Admission is free for all spectators.

“These are opportunities for us,” Bunn said. “We’re fourth in the league right now and we’re playing the top two teams. It’s a chance for us to come out and improve our RPI and move up in the conference.

“We did some good things tonight, but we got tight in the end. We have to be prepared for Miami on Sunday.”

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