Oct. 27, 2013
By Andrew Jennette
ORLANDO, Fla. (UCFKnights.com) - Aces were wild for the UCF volleyball team as it racked up 10 total and earned a 3-1 victory (25-7, 25-10, 23-25, 25-19) over Memphis at The Venue on Sunday afternoon. The Knights (15-7, 6-3 The American) have now won 12-consecutive matches on their home floor.
The Black and Gold jumped on the Tigers (11-12, 3-6) right from the opening serve and took the opening set by 18 points, their largest margin in a single set this season. It was more of the same in the second frame as the Knights won the stanza by 15 points, their second biggest mark of the year. The Knights held Memphis to just a .057 attack percentage for the match as they racked up 13 blocks for the second-consecutive match.
We're going to look at this weekend overall as a really successful weekend for us, UCF head coach Todd Dagenais said. (Memphis head coach) April (Jauregui) will be the first to tell you that the first two sets were not a true representation of Memphis or how good they really are. The team we expected to see was the team that came out and beat us in the third set and nearly took the fourth set. I give Memphis a lot of credit, they showed a lot of heart and didn't roll over at all once they got down 2-0.
Freshman defensive specialist Shelby Foyer led the charge with three service aces while also pitching in with nine digs. The Carmel, Id., native leads the Knights this season with 22 aces and has provided the team with consistency in the back row during her rookie year. Junior middle blocker DeLaina Sarden was a force offensively with 16 kills on 28 swings for a .500 attack percentage. The Lawrenceville, Ga., native also got into the act in serve/receive with two aces of her own while also chipping in five combined blocks.
This week in practice we worked on hand contact on the ball, Dagenais said. We worked on pace on the ball, we worked on location of the toss, we worked on varying our speeds. We worked on the most boring and fundamental things you can think of, but really that's what we needed to do. We needed to break it down to the most elementary levels and build it back up. That's what we did this week in both serve and receive. We still have a lot of work to do. We have nine more conference matches to keep improving.
Junior libero Jade Hayes extended her double-digit digs streak to 17 with a match-high 14. The Ozark, Mo., native is averaging a team-best 4.35 digs per set. Juniors Ashley Gialenios and Loren Cory were effective on the left and right sides as they combined for 17 kills and eight combined blocks. Cory has been consistent as a opposite-side hitter for the Knights averaging 2.35 kills per set.
The Knights play just one match next week, a Friday night showdown in Tampa with in-state rival USF at 7 p.m. UCF swept the Bulls at Volleybowl VI on Sept. 27 and currently sit just a game behind them in the conference standings.