UCF Sweeps SMU in Dallas

DALLAS, Texas – The UCF volleyball team (15-6, 8-1) swept SMU (9-10, 5-4) on the road on Friday night in Dallas, Texas with scores of 25-22, 25-23, 25-17.
"This was one of those coin flips," head coach Todd Dagenais said, "We knew it was going to be that way going in because they're a pretty prolific offense and their defense is one of the best in the conference. We knew we were going to have to go out and try to go point for point with them. But I think we took care of our business, we shut the door when we had to, and we played our guts out today."
McKenna Melville recorded her ninth double-double of the season with 22 kills, hitting .450, and adding 10 digs. Anne-Marie Watson notched 10 kills while hitting .450 and three blocks while Claudia Dillon had eight kills and hit .889 on nine attempts. Nerissa Moravec led with four blocks while Amber Olson picked up 41 assists.
It was a back and forth battle all match long.
The Knights got out to an early lead of 7-3 before SMU used a run with two aces to come back within one, 7-6. The Mustangs continued to hang close and even grabbed their first lead at 12-11. It was back and forth from there as SMU got out to its largest lead of four points, 19-15, but the Knights came back on a 6-0 run, five of which were kills from Melville, 22-20. Olson secured the set with an ace, 25-22, to go up 1-0.
The Knights and Mustangs traded points early in the second. Tied 9-9, the Knights used a 4-0 run to take a 12-9 lead, but SMU followed suit with a 5-0 run to lead 14-12. The Mustangs got out to an 18-15 lead before the Knights used a pair of runs to take back the lead 21-20. Two kills from Dillon and a block by Moravec and Melville came in clutch time as the Knights took the second set, 25-23. UCF led 2-0, heading into a big third set.
The third set started just the same and was tied up at 11. UCF used a 3-0 run before SMU came back within one at 16-15. The Knights kept momentum on their side and went on a huge 6-0 run with three kills from Melville, an ace from Katelyn Grimes, and a block from Olson and Dillon to lead 22-15. Watson's kill sealed the sweep as the Knights won the third set, 25-17.
UCF continues its winning streak to four straight.
[On ability to answer]
The match was tight, it was always tight. Nearly every set they got a run to go up three. I would call a timeout and we just set up a play, settled down, make sure we get a good pass, play side out, and try to get a few serving points. It's not really any magic, it just works. And that's a tribute to our team for having amnesia about the last point and really moving on to the next one.
[On McKenzie Chambers]
McKenzie did a great job in her first start today. She went out there and she played her heart out for her first start on the outside. She's never played outside for us, but it's something we've been working on for a few weeks. I give her high praise for her composure and how she handled being on the floor on the road against a really good team in her first start in the position.
[On Amber Olson]
I thought Amber did an unbelievable job of finding the open person, waiting long enough, and then setting the right person. She constantly did that the entire match and this is probably one of the best matches Amber has ever set. [SMU] had a difficulty figuring out where they wanted to go.
UCF will stay on the road to take on Memphis this Sunday, October 24 at 1:00 p.m. ET.
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