ST. PETERSBURG, FL - Buse Ene and Tierra Porter each posted 14 kills as Florida Southern College volleyball rallied from a first-set loss to defeat Eckerd, 3-1, in Sunshine State Conference action on Tuesday night at the McArthur Center. The Moccasins (13-7, 8-4 SSC) also erased an eight-point deficit in the second set to sweep the season series with the Tritons (8-10, 3-8) and pick up their seventh win in their last eight contests.
Florida Southern returns home this weekend, where it is a perfect 10-0 this season, to take on Lynn (Oct. 12) and Barry (Oct. 13). The Mocs will then play seven in a row away from Jenkins Field House before finishing up the regular season with home contests against Rollins (Nov. 9) and Tampa (Nov. 10).
HOW IT HAPPENED
- The Moccasins were able to stake themselves to an early lead (8-5) in the first set of the night, but the Tritons were able to tie things up just moments later and eventually took a 17-15 lead in the late stages. The teams would stay almost neck-and-neck as Eckerd was able to stay just in front until an FSC attack error gave the Tritons the set-point they needed and a 25-23 first-set win.
- In the second set, Southern appeared as if it was in serious trouble as Eckerd stormed out to a 5-0 lead and went in front by as many as eight points (17-9). That's when Florida Southern turned the tide of the entire match by reeling off seven-straight points to pull within one (17-16), and eventually took the lead on an Eckerd attack error that gave the Mocs a 21-20 advantage. Down 24-23, the Tritons were able to momentarily stave off defeat, but an Eckerd service error and a service ace by Nicole Mattson gave FSC a 26-24 set victory.
- The momentum gained from the second set propelled the Moccasins to a dominant start in the third as they raced out to a 14-4 lead. Despite making several small scoring runs, the Tritons were unable to get within fewer than five the rest of the way as Florida Southern rolled to a 25-17 victory and a 2-1 match lead.
- Florida Southern also got out to a big lead in the fourth and final set, outscoring the Tritons 7-3 through the first 10 points en route to a 19-11 lead later in the set. Whitney Drost and Rachael Martin put down the final two kills of the night to make the final 25-16 in the fourth set and send the Mocs home with a win.
- Ene's 14 kills came with an attack percentage of .414, while Porter's 14 kills came on the strength of a .333 attack percentage. Ene also tallied 11 digs, while Gabby Fresh led all players with 28. Mattson finished with 13 kills and 16 digs, while Bethany Besancenez had 43 assists and 16 digs. The Moccasins outblocked the Tritons 9-4 and hit a combined .275 on the attack while limiting Eckerd to just .148
INSIDE THE NUMBERS
- Florida Southern improved to 75-10 all-time against Eckerd, including a 33-7 mark when facing the Tritons on the road. The victory marked the Moccasins' fourth-straight win in the all-time series.
- Mattson increased her career kill total to 1,465, and needs just 31 more to move into fifth in school history in career kills. Besancenez pushed her career assist total to 4,741. She needs 989 more to set the program record for career assists.
- Fresh's 28 digs marked a career-high for the senior and are the most by any Moccasin since Nov. 5, 2016, when Brindl Langley also had 28. Ene's 14 kills were a season-high for the junior college transfer, and Porter's 14 kills were also a season-high for the freshman.
- Florida Southern will face Lynn (Oct. 12) and Barry (Oct. 13) at home before embarking on a seven-match road trip. The Moccasins will play three teams from the Gulf South Conference at next weekend's GSC/SSC Crossover in Orlando. The three opponents will be determined early next week. Florida Southern is then on the road for four-straight SSC contests before closing out the regular season at home against Rollins (Nov. 9) and Tampa (Nov. 10).