Florida is back in the O’Connell Center for a battle of unbeaten teams in the SEC.
The No. 11 Florida Gators (13-3, 3-0) will take on the Texas A&M Aggies (10-5, 3-0) Friday night. The Gators will look to push their winning streak to 10 straight.
They have yet to drop a set in the SEC. The 12 consecutive set wins is tied for the fourth-longest streak to kick off conference play under Mary Wise.
Scorching the SEC
“The SEC has been really level and competitive,” right side hitter Holly Carlton said.
Florida sits in the top five in all but two statistics in-conference:
- First in hitting percentage
- Second in opponent hitting percentage
- Fourth in kills per set
- Second in blocks per set
- First in service aces
Middle blocker Rachael Kramer paces the conference in hitting percentage against SEC teams.
Carlton said the team is still solidifying the identity for the rest of the season. Wise said the coaching staff has seen the team grow and players get better in different areas.
“That continues to be our strength is our ability to improve,” Wise said.
Florida and Texas A&M met in both Gainesville and College Station during 2017. Florida got the best of Laura Kuhn’s squad both times with a 3-1 at home and a 3-0 win on the road.
Former Gator Carli Snyder combined for 26 kills over the two matches along with a double-double performance in their road matchup.
Wise’s squad hit near .300 and held A&M to under a .200 clips in both meetings. The first three sets in the Gainesville showdown were decided by a minimum two points.
Scouting the Aggies
Texas A&M is coming off two consecutive five-set matches against both Georgia and LSU. The Aggies found themselves down twice against the Tigers in what was their first true road match of the year.
Kuhn’s team could test the Gators on offense it ranks fifth in the conference in opposing hitting percentage (.177) and digs per set (14.96).
With determination and a strong will to win, the Aggies fight back to get another victory and improve to 3-0 in SEC matches. Check out these plays from our 3-2 win at LSU.#OwnIt #GigEm pic.twitter.com/7wsGLOCF9G
— Texas A&M Volleyball (@AggieVolleyball) October 2, 2018
Here are some players to watch for A&M:
- Hollann Hans (OH) – ranked in fifth in the SEC in kills per set (4.22). Leads the team in kills (228) and total attempts (607)
- Camille Conner (S) – sits fourth in the conference in hitting percentage against conference opponents (.411) and recorded a triple-double against LSU (13 kills, 46 assists and 18 digs)
- Amy Houser (L) – team captain and leader in digs per set against SEC opponents (5.08)
In addition, they come in ranked in the top three in the SEC in service aces, featuring three players who sit in the top 10 in the SEC in aces per set against all opponents.
Back at It on Sunday
The Gators will turn around and face Georgia on Sunday at 1 p.m. on the SEC Network.
Quick facts on the Bulldogs:
- Sitting at 12-4, 3-2 in conference
- Have yet to win consecutive SEC matches
- Will be playing in the second of three straight road matches
- Ranked in the top 10 in hitting percentage and kills per set
- Have lost 60 of the last 61 matches to Florida.