UCF Volleyball Sweeps Cincinnati for Fifth Straight Win

CINCINNATI – The UCF volleyball team cruised past Cincinnati in straight sets (25-14, 25-18, 25-16) on Friday night at Fifth Third Arena to earn its fifth consecutive win.

The Knights (17-1, 9-1 AAC) recorded a .429 team attacking percentage for the match, which is the second highest of the season for the squad and second highest in American Athletic Conference play this season. UCF put down 46 kills on 84 attempts with only 10 attacking errors, while limiting the Bearcats (5-14, 3-6) to a .114 clip for the match.

"We missed a lot of serves but our block really helped us to stay in the match," said UCF head coach Todd Dagenais. "All in all we did a good job at adjusting to the midweek game followed by traveling early the following morning and playing on Friday." 
The Knights scored the first two points to get things started in set one before the Bearcats tied the set at 5-5. Abby Hansen answered with a kill to give UCF a 6-5 lead. Cincinnati knotted the set again one points later, but the Knights won six of the next nine points to grab a 12-9 lead after a service ace from Dresden Pass. The Black and Gold went on an 8-1 scoring run to polish off set one 25-14 with a kill from Claudia Dillon, as the Knights recorded a .600 attacking percentage in the opening set with 17 kills on 25 attempts with only two attacking errors.

Cincinnati and UCF traded points early in the second set, but a kill from Dillon sparked a 7-0 scoring run with Katelyn Grimes serving for the Knights. UCF led from that point in the set and Kari Zumach tallied the final kill of the frame to give the Knights a 25-18 win and 2-0 lead in the match.

UCF started the third set strong, jumping out to a 6-1 lead in the set following a service ace from Dillon and a Cincinnati attacking error. A 6-2 run gave the Knights a 15-5 advantage and the squad went on to win the set, 25-16.

The Knights have now won their last 15 sets and have only lost three sets in AAC matches all season.

Heidi Bonde led UCF with a season and game-high 12 kills. Hansen and Zumach each tallied nine kills, while Dillon helped the offense with eight kills and posted an .889 hitting percentage.

"The left side has been something we've been trying to work with all year," said Dagenais. "Heidi got a shot tonight and really took advantage of her opportunity. On the court, you could tell she had the confidence like she belonged on that court. Both middles were on fire tonight and it was hard to stop them. Amber did a good job at setting up the offense and being quick to set to throw off Cincinnati."

Amber Olson led all players in the match with 42 assists, while adding eight digs. Chloe Scheer recorded six digs on the night. Dillon accounted for six blocks and Zumach added five.

The Knights will continue on the road next weekend with a matchup on Friday, Oct. 28 at Tulsa and Sunday, Oct. 30 at Wichita State.