The eighth ranked Florida volleyball got its 11th straight victory Sunday with a 3-0 sweep (25-9, 25-14, 25-16) of Mississippi State in an afternoon clash at the Stephen C. O’Connell Center. Florida tacked on its 10th SEC victory, improving to 16-3 on the season and an undefeated 10-0 in league play.
Stabilized by the veteran back row and senior Taylor Unroe’s 14 digs, the Orange and Blue posted their eighth SEC sweep – second against Mississippi State — using a team-best 10 kills from freshman Rhamat Alhassan, while junior middle Simone Antwi hit a career-best .875 (7-0-8) against Mississippi State (6-19, 1-9 SEC).
The Gators jumped out to an early lead, and never looked back. Florida did not give up the lead from start to finish, outscoring the Bulldogs 59.0 to 19.0.
A total of 15 Gators saw action in UF’s second meeting with the Bulldogs this season, including freshman setter Abby Detering, who dished out a season-best eight assists.
Junior setter Mackenzie Dagostino added 27 assists, while sharing time with Detering. Seniors Holly Pole and Maddy Monserez combined for 15 digs (11 for Pole, 4 for Monserez) and four service aces (two a piece).
Gator head coach Mary Wise credited her senior back row as a big key to her squad’s success.
“A lot of credit in this win goes to the play of our three seniors: serving, passing and digging, ” Wise said. “They played like the focused, senior veterans that they are.”
Florida held Mississippi State to nine points in a 25-9 first-set decision, the lowest point total for a Gator opponent in a set this season, while the Bulldogs had just 15 kills in the match, the lowest for a UF foe in SEC play since 2012 when MSU had 14 in the Gator-Bulldog match up two years ago.
MSU became UF’s 13th opponent this season under a .197 hitting efficiency, and the second to record a negative team clip (-.012).
Florida will keep the pedal on the gas with its next match, a mid-week tilt Wednesday at Georgia. The Bulldogs and Gators last met in Gainesville October 10th, a 3-0 (25-14, 25-15, 25-16) sweep in favor of the Orange and Blue. The Gators are 57-9 all-time against the Bulldogs, and 54-1 under Mary Wise.
First serve between the Gators and Bulldogs is slated for 7 p.m. from Athens. Catch the call on ESPN 850 WRUF.
For postgame comments from Mary Wise, Abby Detering, Simone Antwi, and Samantha Dubiel, click below: