Volleyball Unable to Overcome Strong Houston Offense Sunday


Oct. 16, 2011

Final Stats

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By Eric DeSalvo

HOUSTON, Texas (UCFAthletics.com) - After knocking off Rice on the first stop of its Texas road swing Friday, the UCF volleyball team was unable to upend Houston Sunday afternoon at the Athletics/Alumni Center. The Knights dropped the four-set match, 3-1 (25-17, 22-25, 17-25, 23-25), and sit at 12-8 on the year and 4-5 in Conference USA play.

"I thought it was strange to play some of our best offensive volleyball and not come away with a win. I feel like if we would've played just an average defensive match, it would've been good enough to steal another win on the road," head volleyball coach Todd Dagenais said.

"Both teams were functioning on a very high level early on," Dagenais added. "Houston made some really nice adjustments in the third set that we weren't able to counter-adjust to. They capitalized on some errors and were able to take control of the match. In the fourth, we just didn't make some critical plays at the exact moment we needed to."

Sophomore outside hitter Angelica Crump (Atlanta, Ga.) once again led the Knights' offensive attack with her third-straight 20-plus kill effort against the Cougars (14-5, 7-3). She finished the match with 21 daggers and was joined in the double-digit club by junior Evija Vilde (Riga, Latvia) who notched 13.

The Knights were unable to slow the attack of Houston's Lucy Charuk and Katie Norris who blasted 23 and 18 kills, respectively. Setter Caitlin Ogletree assisted the Cougars on 58 points in the match.

UCF started the contest with its customary hot start, winning the first set for the 16th in 2011 behind a 5-0 run to open the stanza with junior Meredith Murphy (Austin, Texas) at the line. Crump led the Knights with seven kills in the frame, and Vukson dished out 14 of her 45 assists while guiding the Knights to a .387 attack percentage.

After the Black and Golf claimed the first set, Houston bounced back by taking the next three and the match. The Cougars were able to conclude the contest with a hitting percentage of .317 and had three athletes with double-digit kills.

The Knights return home to take on Tulane Friday night at 7 p.m., and Dagenais expects many more improvements from his squad when they hit the floor.

"We have a pretty good idea of who we are, and now it's going to be about having the confidence to continue executing as well as we have been, and having enough pride to overcome the things that we aren't doing well. Overall, compared to where we were two weeks ago, we are vastly improved. We are in position to make a huge run now in the second stretch of the season."