Florida State Fights Off NC State Comeback Attempt to Win 3-1

  0 Braden Keith | October 10th, 2016 | ACC, College - Women's Indoor, News

Match Stats

A valiant comeback effort by the North Carolina State Wolf Pack came up short as #16 Florida State won a 3-1 decision on Sunday on the road.

The Seminoles won the first two sets, including a dominant second frame where they had 19 kills, hit .310, and went for 75% of side-out opportunities.

North Carolina State, however, fought back to win the 3rd set by 2 thanks to their three-headed monster of Julia BrownTeni Sopitan, and Erin Chatman, who combined for 14 of their 40 kills in the 3rd set alone.

The Wolfpack looked like they might push to a tie-breaking 5th set when they were the first team to 25 points, but the Sminoles scored the last three points of the match and sealed the victory with back-to-back kills by Natasha Calkins – her only two of the set.

Florida State had two players, Katie Horton (15 kills, 6 errors, .237 average) and Mara Green (12 kills, 2 errors, .500 average) in double-figures offensively – an Horton chipped in 20 digs and 2 blocks to her tally.

While NC State took a loss, head coach Linda Hampton-Keith’s team was competitive. The Wolfpack’s kills + service aces + blocks were actually 2 more than Florida State’s, though that was cancelled out by having 11 service errors. In all, there were 20 ties and 12 lead changes in the four-set affair.

I’m very proud of how we ended the match, we definitely ended better than we started and we gave ourselves some chances at the end,” said Hampton-Keith. “But I’m disappointed that it took us so long to play that well and in the end it just kind of got away from us, so we talked about that to make sure we come out better to start our next match.

“We can’t put ourselves in a corner like that to where we have to fight back so hard and have such a thin margin of error.”

Press Releases

Courtesy Florida State Athletics:

RALEIGH, N.C. – The senior trio of Katie Horton (15 kills), Mara Green (12 kills) and Melanie Keil (seven total blocks) helped 16th-ranked Florida State (12-3, 5-1 ACC) earn its first ACC road victory of the season by scores of 25-22, 25-19, 23-25, 27-25 at NC State (10-8, 3-3 ACC) in Reynolds Gymnasium on Sunday afternoon.

Horton, who moved within two kills of 1,000 for her career, posted her fourth double-double of the season as she tied her career-high in digs (20) which she set against Georgia Tech on Nov. 25, 2015. Green topped the double-digit kill plateau for the second time this season as she tallied a career-best 12 kills while posting a .500 attack percentage that included only two errors in 20 attempts.

Keil led the way for a Florida State front row that recorded 22 assisted blocks, notching at least five assisted blocks for the eighth time this season. Joining the senior middle blocker among those who stonewalled the NC State offense were Milica Kubura (six assisted blocks) and Green, who contributed four assisted blocks and the Seminoles’ lone solo block.

Junior Cecilie Woie highlighted the back row with a career-best 28 digs. Woie, who topped her previous career-high in digs by five, also recorded two services and two assists for the Seminoles. She was joined in double figure digs by Horton and Brianne Burkert, who added 10 digs to go along with 31 assists for the ninth double-double of her career.

“We are very glad to get the win,” said head coach Chris Poole. “We have a lot of work to do, but we are still finding a way to win most of our matches. Our inconsistent play us really hurting us because we often have big leads we lose. We need to be more disciplined with our play.”

Looking to rebound from a late NC State rally in the third frame, the Seminoles opened up the fourth set on a 7-1 tear as they capitalized on five unforced Wolfpack errors in the process. Despite brief runs by NC State, who trimmed the deficit to four on two occasions, FSU extended its lead to 19-11 following a decisive kill by Keil.

Three kills each from Julia Brown and Perry Ramsey kick-started the NC State offense as it put together a 12-4 run to bring the game to a climatic 23-23 tie. Florida State battled past two match points by the Wolfpack and used kills down the stretch by Keil and Natasha Calkins to its their 31st straight victory over NC State.

Trailing 2-0 in the match, NC State quickly assumed a 4-1 lead in the third behind the play of Brown and Teni Sopitan. The Seminoles would eventually draw even, 6-6, with the service game of Woie for the first of four ties.

With the third set even at nine, NC State briefly assumed a three-point advantage, before a series of slams by Green and Kubura forced a 16-16 deadlock. The Pack eventually regained the lead, 20-19, and overcame kills from Horton and Ambrose and a pair of unforced errors down the stretch to complete the two-point win over Florida State.

Solid defense and kills from the combination of Kubura, Green and Christina Ambrose provided Florida State with an early 5-1 advantage in the second set. The Wolfpack retaliated, in similar fashion to the opening set, to pull even at five-all for the first of seven ties.

Back-to-back kills by the tandem of Kubura and Ambrose sparked a 5-1 run, which also included strikes by Horton and Keil, as FSU enjoyed a 16-12 lead. The Pack would pull within three on two occasions, but it was two kills by Ambrose along with strikes from Horton, Green and Kubura that gave the Seminoles a six-point win.

Two kills by Horton and three Wolfpack errors allowed Florida State to establish an 8-4 advantage early in the first set. However, NC State found its offensive form and used two strikes from the combination of Erin Chatman and Sopitan to pull even at 12-all.

The two teams forced four ties, including a 16-16 deadlock, before strikes by Horton and Green along with a Burkert service ace helped the Seminoles forge ahead 21-18. Horton capped off a solid opening set with her sixth kill and with the assistance of a Kubura slam and two NC State errors closed out the three-point win for the Noles.

Florida State returns to Tully Gymnasium on Friday when the Seminoles host Virginia Tech as part of the Paint it Pink match. FSU begins play at 7 p.m. with the Hokies. Two days later the Noles will host Pittsburgh at 1 p.m. in a match featured on the ACC Network Extra.

For more information visit Facebook (Florida State Seminoles Volleyball), Twitter (FSU_Volleyball) and Instagram (FSUvolleyball).

Courtesy NC State Athletics:

RALEIGH, N.C. – The NC State volleyball team put together a furious comeback late in the match, but was unable to complete it as the 16th-ranked Florida State Seminoles held on for the 3-1 (25-22, 25-19, 23-25, 27-25) victory Sunday afternoon inside Reynolds Coliseum.

After dropping the first two sets, the Wolfpack rallied to win the third set and the Pack had two set-point attempts in the fourth set, but the Seminoles were able to fight them off to secure the win.

NC State falls to 10-8 overall and 3-3 in Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) play, while Florida State improves to 12-3 and 5-1 in league action.

Quoting Hampton-Keith
Opening statement…
“I’m very proud of how we ended the match, we definitely ended better than we started and we gave ourselves some chances at the end,” said head coach Linda Hampton-Keith. “But I’m disappointed that it took us so long to play that well and in the end it just kind of got away from us, so we talked about that to make sure we come out better to start our next match.”

On the team’s comeback in the fourth set, after the early deficit…
“It was one of those moments where you watch your team respond and you’re excited, proud of them for that, but at the same time you’re pushing them to continue it. I thought a lot of our issues weren’t necessarily volleyball issues, but more of how we were responding and the way we were taking care of things on our side of the net.

“We can’t put ourselves in a corner like that to where we have to fight back so hard and have such a thin margin of error.”

Worth Noting
– Despite losing the match, NC State recorded more kills in the contest than Florida State, 62-55, and the Wolfpack also tallied more assists, 61-52.
– NCSU also held the Florida State offensive attack, which leads the ACC in hitting percentage, to a .226 clip, below its average of .264.
– Junior Julia Brown recorded her ninth double-double performance of the season and second consecutive with 17 kills and 11 digs.
– The Wolfpack was without the services of its starting setter Maggie Speaks, so sophomore Becky Porter made her second consecutive and third overall start this season in the contest.

Match Rewind
– NC State started slow in the match, as No. 16 Florida State rushed out to a 7-3 lead in the first set, but the Wolfpack recovered quickly to knot the score at eight after a kill by Teni Sopitan.
– A kill by Kaitlyn Kearney gave the Pack a 16-15 lead, but the Seminoles countered with three unanswered points to grab an 18-16 advantage to force an NCSU timeout.
– Florida State pulled ahead, 23-20, and NC State countered to trim the lead to 23-22, but the ‘Noles won the next two points to earn the 25-22 first-set win.
– In the second set, the score was even early but a 6-1 run gave Florida State a 16-12 advantage and the Wolfpack was unable to recover from that deficit.
– NC State fought back in the set to narrow the Florida State lead to 18-15; however, the Seminoles went on to win the frame, 25-19.
– The Wolfpack started strong after the intermission, taking a 6-3 lead in the third set after a service ace by Brown.
– With the score level at 18, NC State won three of the next four points, forcing a pair of timeouts by Florida State to take a 21-19 lead.
– Freshman Jessica Kemp capped the set with a kill from Porter, as NCSU emerged victorious in the set, 25-23.
– Florida State raced out to a huge lead in the fourth set, leading by as much as eight at times but NC State wasn’t done and fought back in the frame.
– With the tally 19-11, the Pack went on a 5-1 run to trim the margin to 20-16.
– Following a kill by FSU to make it 22-17, NC State responded with five consecutive points to knot the score at 22, concluding an 11-3 run by the Wolfpack.
– After the ‘Noles grabbed a 23-22 lead, the Pack countered with back-to-back points to take a 24-23 lead and own set point.
– A block by FSU helped stave off NCSU’s first set-point attempt and a kill helped fight off the Pack’s second attempt at 25-24.
– Florida State won the next three points to escape with the 27-25 fourth-set win and 3-1 victory in the overall match.

Top Performers
– Brown led the Wolfpack with 17 kills, while Sopitan also had a strong match posting 13 kills to go along with a .333 attacking percentage.
– Erin Chatman also notched double-digit kills with 10 and Perry Ramsey pitched in with nine, in addition to Kearney’s seven.
– At setter, Porter handed out a match-high 57 assists and also tallied four blocks and two kills.
– Rachel Eppley headlined the defensive effort with 19 digs, while Ramsey contributed 17 digs.

Up Next
NC State returns to action Thursday, Oct. 13, when it travels to Louisville to take on the host Cardinals. First serve is slated for 7 p.m. and the match will be broadcast live on the ACC Network Extra.



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About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and co-founder of VolleyMob.com. Braden's first foray into sports journalism came in 2010, when he launched a swimming website called The Swimmers' Circle. Two years later, he joined SwimSwam.com as a co-founder. Long huge fans of volleyball, when Braden and the SwimSwam partners sought an opportunity to …

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