Nov. 17, 2005
HOUSTON, Texas - Sophomore outside hitter Schanell Neiderworder had a double-double with 15 kills and 10 digs as the ninth-seeded UCF volleyball team won its Conference USA Championship debut on Thursday, rallying for a 3-1 (22-30, 30-24, 30-24, 30-24) first-round victory over No. 8 Memphis at Autry Court. The Golden Knights (9-17) will face top-seeded Marshall in the quarterfinals on Friday at 2 p.m. Eastern.
Junior outside hitter Maina Heming also tallied a double-double against the Tigers (16-16), finishing with 13 kills and a career-high 18 digs.
UCF hit just .024 as a team in game one compared to .250 for Memphis. After the opening game, the squad settled down. In game three, the Golden Knights hit .484 and followed that with a .306 performance in game four.
"In game one, we were not doing a lot offensively and I credit Memphis for that," said UCF head coach Meg Colado. "We also had a lot of defensive errors in game one. After that, we settled down and realized that it was just volleyball, regardless of it being the Conference USA Tournament. Then, we just got into a groove."
Junior middle blocker Jana Mitchell had a .345 hitting percentage for the match and tallied 12 kills and five total blocks in the win. Sophomore outside hitter Lorin Lukas just missed a double-double with 11 kills and nine digs.
In addition to two service aces, junior setter Leah Alexander recorded 44 assists for UCF. With the win, UCF improved to 2-1 versus Memphis this year.
"This is a good win for us," said Colado. "Memphis is a good team and to beat them twice in one year is something we can be proud of."
Nancy Nellans had a double-double for the Tigers, finishing with 16 kills and 18 digs. Ashley Liford registered 17 kills in the loss. Laura Cote posted a double-double with 56 assists and 11 digs.
During the regular season, Marshall (23-5) claimed a pair of 3-0 contests versus UCF. The Thundering Herd posted a 15-1 mark in conference play and earned a first-round bye at the league tournament.
Live video and statistics from Friday's quarterfinal match will be available online at www.UCFathletics.com and www.ConferenceUSA.com.