HATTIESBURG, Miss. - The Florida Atlantic University volleyball team continued its road trip by holding off a furious comeback to beat Southern Miss in five sets (25-20, 25-23, 16-25, 20-25, 15-10) on Sunday. The Owls evened their Conference USA record at 4-4, while bettering their overall mark to 13-7.
USM led 11-10 early in the first frame when the Owls went on a 7-2 run to take the lead. FAU’s margin remained at least three points the rest of the way and won 25-20. In the second stanza, USM again led early before FAU used another scoring run, this one 11-5, to seize a 22-19 advantage. The Golden Eagles didn’t go away and tied the score at 23-23 before Abbi Reid put down a kill and teamed with Ivone Martinez on a block to end the set and put the Owls up 2-0. Out of the intermission, USM gained firm control of the third set and maintained it throughout, winning 25-16. In set number four, FAU held a 14-10 edge and was on the verge of closing out the match before the Golden Eagles answered with a 15-6 rally to force a fifth set. In that fifth set, Kori Varney’s serving helped the Owls build an 8-1 lead. USM again proved stubborn and got as close as four at 14-10. However, a Cailea Gibbs kill ended the match and gave FAU the win.
- Sydney Nemtuda recorded her third double-double of the season with a match high 17 kills and 10 digs.
- Sigourney Kame had 15 kills, her 18th double-digit kill outing of the year.
- Gabrielle Dixon tied her career high with 13 kills.
- Ivone Martinez notched her team best seventh double-double of the year, tallying 49 assists and 13 digs.
- Alex Cardona had 16 digs to helm the Owls in that category.
FAU Head Coach Fernanda Nelson
“Southern Miss is a great team and we were able to stay aggressive all the way throughout the match. Our blocking has gotten much better and it helped us win the match today. Overall, this was a great weekend for us.”
The Owls will wrap up their three-match road trip at FIU on Friday, Oct. 27. The match will start at 7 p.m. Live stats will be available at fausports.com.