Sept. 20, 2013
BOCA RATON, Fla.- Junior Ivana Bulajic had 16 kills and was one of three Owls to record at least 10 as the Florida Atlantic volleyball team rallied from two sets down to defeat UCF (24-26, 10-25, 25-19, 27-25, 15-10) on Friday night.
The first set was a fight from the very beginning, as it featured three ties and eight lead changes. The eighth tie came at 24, before UCF scored back-to-back points to take a 26-24 win. In the second set, the Knights (9-3) used their size advantage to overpower the Owls (7-5) in a 25-10 victory.
FAU began to mount its comeback in the third set, as the Owls' relentless effort throughout the night seemed to wear down their opponents. One of Alessia Pizzoccheri's 11 kills on the night put the Owls ahead 8-7 in the third and her serving helped extend the lead. UCF pulled to within one at 15-14, but consecutive kills by Pizzoccheri and Kristi Tekavec helped FAU regain control on the way to a 25-19 win.
Set number four began with UCF looking to end any hope of a comeback. The Knights led by seven, 17-10, before five different FAU players recorded kills as part of a 12-3 run to put the Owls ahead 22-20. UCF recovered to tie the score and the teams traded the next several points, before Pizzoccheri stepped up to meet the challenge. The junior put down a kill and teamed with Katarina Stepanovic on a block to tie the match at two sets each.
In the fifth set, FAU got out to a 4-1 lead, but the Knights rallied to tie the score at nine. UCF seemed to shrink from the moment, committing four attack errors down the stretch as the Owls completed their incredible comeback, 15-10.
Pizzoccheri had 19 digs to go along with her 11 kills, Ivana Bulajic recorded a career high 19 kills and Nathalie Rosado had a career best 27 digs.
The Owls continue their homestand on Friday, Sept. 27, when they open Conference USA play against Marshall. The match starts at 7 p.m. Live video and live stats will be available at fausports.com. For tickets, contact the FAU Ticket Office at 1-866-FAU-OWLS.