Volleyball: Owls drop two of three matches

Team beats FGCU, but fall to Ohio and FIU during weekend.

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Volleyball: Owls drop two of three matches

Opposite hitter Gabrielle Dixon blocks a Stetson scoring attempt on Friday during the FAU Invitational tournament. Mohammed F Emran | Staff Photographer

Opposite hitter Gabrielle Dixon blocks a Stetson scoring attempt on Friday during the FAU Invitational tournament. Mohammed F Emran | Staff Photographer

Opposite hitter Gabrielle Dixon blocks a Stetson scoring attempt on Friday during the FAU Invitational tournament. Mohammed F Emran | Staff Photographer

Opposite hitter Gabrielle Dixon blocks a Stetson scoring attempt on Friday during the FAU Invitational tournament. Mohammed F Emran | Staff Photographer

Ryan Lynch, Sports Editor

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After starting the week with a victory over Florida Gulf Coast University, Florida Atlantic volleyball was unable to win their final two games of the weekend.

FAU is now 8-5 on the season. They are also 0-1 in conference play with their loss to Florida International. Here’s what you need to know from this weekend’s slate of games:

Game One:

FAU 3, FGCU 1

FAU traveled to Fort Myers on Thursday night to kick off the Florida Gulf Coast Invitational against the host, Florida Gulf Coast University Eagles.

Pulling ahead early, the Owls won the first set (25-22) after scoring with 18 kills and two service aces.

In the second set, FGCU came back to win (25-21) after two lead changes and four ties nearly saw FAU take the first two sets in a row.

After that, the Owls took control of the match, winning the third and fourth sets, 26-24 and 25-15 respectively. The Owls combined for 31 kills in the final two games, and 61 over the whole match.

Junior Maja Ristic led the team with 26 kills, while earning a double-double with 10 digs. Senior Kristina Rankovic had 13 digs and added eight kills.

The win pushed the Owls’ record to 8-3, while FGCU dropped to 7-4. It also became the first time that FAU did not sweep an opponent in a win this season, with all seven previous victories ending in a 3-0 scoreline.

Game Two:

Ohio 3, FAU 1

Thursday saw the Owls play the Ohio Bobcats in the second game of the FGCU Invitational, with Florida Atlantic falling in four sets.

The Bobcats took the first two sets, 25-20 and 25-22 respectively. FAU and Ohio had a total of 17 ties and seven lead changes in those closely contested sets.

In the third set, FAU held on to win 25-23, despite having to hold off Ohio winning four straight points late in the game to tie it at 22.

Ohio went on to take the final set of the game (25-20) after taking seven out of 10 of the game’s first points. The Owls did not lead once in the final set, tying the Bobcats twice.

Maja Ristic earned her second double-double of the tournament, attaining 13 kills and 13 digs.

With the loss, FAU ended tournament play 8-4. Ohio improved to 8-3 on the season with the win.

Game Three:

FIU 3, FAU 1

The Owls started conference play with their final game of the week on Sunday, falling to the Florida International University Panthers three sets to one.

In the first set, FIU held a 24-15 lead and looked like they would easily take the set. FAU stormed back with seven straight points and almost took the set back, falling after the seventh point.

The Owls took the second set, 25-21 on the strength of 17 kills by their offense.

Like the Ohio game before, the Panthers won the final two sets. The fourth set saw several ties and three lead changes, but the Owls could not hold on to the lead to extend the match.

Senior Kristina Rankovic had nine kills and 13 digs, while senior Brittany Brown led the team with 12 kills.

Volleyball continues conference play Friday, Sept. 25 at Southern Mississippi at 7 p.m.

Ryan Lynch is the Sports editor of the University Press. For tips regarding this or other articles, he can be contacted at [email protected] or on Twitter.