Merritt Beason jumps for a hit in the Florida Gators volleyball team's victory over the Auburn Tigers. (Photo from @GatorsVB on Twitter)

Gators Get Revenge Over Aggies in a 4-Set Road Win

Last time out, it took Texas A&M a five-set, career performance to edge the Florida Gators on their home turf.

This time,  Florida went into Bryan-College Station to remind them only Gators get out alive with a career day of their own.

The No. 17 Gators improve to 13-4 on the season and 5-3 in SEC play. Texas A&M drops to 14-5 and 6-3 .


Gator Standouts

The story of the night was a season-high in the blocks column for Florida. As a unit, the Gators collected 17 blocks. Gabrielle Essix and and Kennedy Martin claimed nine each, with Nnedi Okammor collecting seven.

The Gators held the Aggies to a .117 hitting clip, while Kennedy Muff dished out 43 assists.

Ellie McKissock collected 17 digs, moving up to third all-time in career digs at Florida.

On the attacking side of the net, Sofia Victoria racked up a season-high 17 kills, followed by the continued dominance of Kennedy Martin with 15 kills and AC Fitzpatrick with 14 kills.

 Set by Set

The first two sets went punch for punch.

Four service errors by Florida and few timely blocks by Texas A&M helped the Aggies fend off a late rally by the Gators, to pull out a 25-23 win in Set 1.

Set 2, was much of the same formula, but in the liking of the Gators.

After being down 11-14, Florida rallied back to a 20-20 tie with a huge block from Nnedi Okammor that was overturned thanks to a successful challenge from coach Mary Wise.

This sparked a fire in the Gators as they would pull out a 25-23 win of their own.

Florida jumped out in the third set, stretching to a 10-3 lead.

Texas A&M boasts the first-ranked team in the SEC for blocks per set, and it proved to be true as their defense rallied to put the Aggies back in the game within two points, at 22-20.

However, Florida’s defense sensed some urgency as their blocking stepped up and slammed the door. The Gators collected their 13th block of the night through just three sets, to secure a 25-21 win.

The fourth set was all Florida; offense, defense, and energy.

Pressure from behind the service line by the Gators, caused the Aggies to send multiple free balls back over the net throughout the set.

This allowed Kennedy Martin’s lethal swinging and a healthy helping of blocks from Okammor to bring Florida to a 19-8 lead.

The Gators ended the match firing on all cylinders, with a 25-12 win.

SEC Network announcer, Chelsea Reber, summed up the match perfectly, labeling the atmosphere as, “All Gator Land tonight.”

Up Next

The Gators travel to Oxford on Wednesday to take on another SEC opponent in the Ole Miss Rebels (8-12, 2-7).

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