The Florida Gators volleyball team remains undefeated in SEC play after a hard-fought victory at home versus No. 15 Kentucky on Friday. Though the Gators managed to keep their sweep streak alive, the matches were much closer than their scores appear (25-20, 25-20, 25-20).
The Gators opened up the first game with six blocks, which seems to neutralize Kentucky's size. However, as the game would go on, the Gators would have struggles of their own. The team had 18 service errors on the night, something UF senior Chloe Mann says they just have to put behind them during the match.
“No matter what type of error we have we always try to flush it and know that it's a sport, it's a game, there's going to be errors. But as long as we stay focused throughout the entire match, that our play-blocking, killing, and digging would overcome that, which it did in this case,” said Mann.
But Mann shouldn't be one to talk about errors. This was another match she had no hitting errors to go with 11 kills. Florida head coach Mary Wise continues to be impressed with Mann's efficiency.
“The peace is about not taking the talents of Chloe Mann for granted,” said Wise. “It's just another match without her making a hitting error. It's ridiculous. It just doesn't happen in our sport. You're going to make hitting errors. It's part of the game. But, obviously no one told her that.”
But it wasn't all about the seasoned vets. Freshman Alex Holston was praised after the game for her team-leading 13 kills on the night with a .667 hitting percentage. After the game, Holston talked about what it was like playing so well against a tough opponent.
“They're pretty big players that can really put up a big block,” said Holston. “They can definitely dig some balls. So it's just like, 'keep going at it' never letting the ball drop, keep swinging, and keep going for it.”
The Gators also got solid performances out of Taylor Brauneis, who had 39 assists, and Ziva Recek who posted a double-double in kills (11) and digs (14).
The Gators take the floor again on Sunday against 14-3 Georgia. The Bulldogs are 4-1 in conference play and are currently riding a three-game winning streak.
Coverage can be heard on ESPN 850 starting at 1:20 p.m.
For audio on the quotes as sound bites, click here: