Knights Open With 3-2 Win Over Iowa State

Box Score (PDF)

OXFORD, Miss. (UCFKnights.com) – The UCF volleyball team opened the season on a high note, battling to a 3-2 (25-15, 22-25, 25-20, 21-25, 15-11) win over Iowa State on Friday evening at the Rebel Invitational.
"This is a huge Quadrant One win for us," UCF head coach Todd Dagenais said. "It's something that's going to be important looking down the road but, more importantly, a tough win like that galvanizes a team and helps them believe that they can achieve what their goals are. Hopefully this gets us off on the right foot."
The Knights (1-0) came out strong in the opening set, scoring the first two points and never relinquishing their lead en route to a 25-15 victory. The Cyclones (0-1) captured the second (25-22), and fourth (25-21) sets but the Black and Gold claimed the third set 25-20 to send the squads to a decisive fifth set. In the final frame, UCF had a sideout percentage of 90 while limiting Iowa State to a -.160 hitting percentage to earn the 15-11 set win and start the season victorious.
Stepping up to start her senior season, Kristina Fisher led a trio of Knights who finished with double-doubles. Fisher tallied 24 kills, hitting at a .488 clip, with 14 digs and a pair of aces.
McKenna Melville opened her sophomore campaign with 15 kills and 10 digs. In her UCF debut, redshirt senior Makenzie Kuchmaner matched Fisher with 14 digs and distributed 11 assists.
A pair of rookies made their collegiate appearances in the season opener. MaKenzie Chambers made the most of her UCF debut, leading the team with seven blocks. Dresi Pass registered 17 assists in her first match as a Knight.
"I'm really proud of the team for coming out of the gate strong in the 2019 season against a perennial Top 15-caliber team. We have so much respect for Iowa State and their coach Christy Lynch and what she's done with the Iowa State program. I very much modeled our growth as a program after what she did at Iowa State and for us to finally play each other and have an epic battle on the floor was an honor.
Although our team will tell you we did not play our best match by far, but they'll also tell you that we're a work in progress. In each of these first 10-12 matches, it's going to be about finding out who we are, what our best lineup is and how we can best be successful this season.
With that being said, there were some great individual performances, but really as a team, the things that we were able to accomplish is what we're going to look back on and be proud of this. This is going to be one of those matches that's going to be really important for us in November."
The Knights continue action at the Rebel Invitational on Saturday, facing a Rice squad that received votes in the AVCA Preseason Top 25. The teams are slated for an 11 a.m. ET start in Oxford.