BOCA RATON, Fla. - The fifth-ranked University of Tampa Spartans volleyball team overpowered the Lynn Fighting Knights 3-0 (25-19, 25-23, 25-22) in its Sunshine State Conference opener. The Spartans improve to 10-1 on the season while the Knights drop to 10-3.
Tampa drove home 18 kills from six different players in the opening game on its way to a 25-19 decision. The second set saw the Spartans down by as much as five points halfway through, before closing the gap and tying the game at 21. A Melissa Vanderhall kill put UT up for good as Tampa won the second 25-23. In the third frame, the Spartans built a five point lead of their own and held on to win 25-22 to seal the match.
The Spartans used a balanced attack, as Vanderhall, Jessica Yingling, and Kaleigh Cunningham each registered 12 kills. Cunningham was the most efficient of the three committing only one error in 34 attempts. She also missed a double-double effort by only one dig. Yingling, however, did turn in her fourth career double-double adding 11 digs. Camille Hanks converted five of eight, and Meghan Sherman tallied 39 assists to help pace the offense.
UT hit a modest .281 for the match, and held LU to a .205 mark. Tampa forced 16 Lynn errors, while committing just 13. Haley Pratt led all Knights in kills with 10 on a .444 clip.
Both teams finished with 54 digs as sophomore Julie Howlett notched a team-high 15. Hanks put up three blocks while five other Spartans had a hand in at least one to finish with six total blocks. Lynn matched Tampa with six blocks of its own.
The Spartans wrap up the weekend tomorrow afternoon at 4 p.m. as
they travel to No. 23 Nova Southeastern (9-5, 1-1). UT will offer
live stats through www.tampaspartans.com. Fans may follow
University of Tampa athletics on Twitter (www.twitter.com/utspartans)
and Facebook (www.facebook.com/tampaspartans).
UT also offers eScores, which is a free text messaging service that
sends text alerts following all Spartan events.