Sept. 27, 2013
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BOCA RATON, Fla. - Marshall volleyball knocked off Florida Atlantic, 3-2 (25-17, 19-25, 25-21, 23-25, 15-13) in its Conference USA opener on Friday night.
The Herd improved to 7-9 on the season while the Owls slipped to 7-6 on the year.
"It's always great to get a win on the road in league play," commented coach Mitch Jacobs. "Our level of focus varied throughout and you can't do that against a good team and be successful. In set five, down 6-10, we played as hard as I've seen this group played and I hope it becomes the norm."
Senior outside hitter Laura Der (Clarksville, Ind.) had a great all-around performance with 15 kills, 21 digs and four block assists while freshman middle blocker Ally Kiekover (Grand Rapids, Mich.) tallied 15 kills with a .414 hitting percentage.
"We had several players that had good offensive nights," remarked Jacobs.
The Herd jumped out to a 3-0 lead to begin the match and never relinquished the lead, taking the set 25-17. Marshall failed to carry the momentum with them into the second set and trailed 11-5. The Marshall squad fought back but was only able to bring the set to it was able to bring the set was 18-16 before the Owls won the set 25-19.
Marshall was able to regain its confidence after the break and jump in front of FAU 10-7 in the third frame. The Owls fought back to tie the set at 19 before a big kill by outside hitter Elyse Panick (Chicago) gave the Herd a one point advantage. Marshall ended the set on a 6-2 run to take it 25-21.
The fourth frame went back-and-fourth between the teams early on before the Owls 11-7 advantage. FAU called a timeout after the Herd battled back to pull the set within one at 23-22. The Owls came out swinging after the break to earn the two points they needed to take the set 25-23.
The fifth set was a tale of two stories. It started with the Owls taking a big 10-6 lead that led to coach Jacobs calling a timeout to gather up his troops. The Herd answered by taking three of the next four points to force a FAU timeout. Marshall kept up its momentum to capture the set 15-13 by taking five of the final seven points.
The Herd will make the short trip to Miami to face FIU for the first all-time meeting on Sunday at 1 p.m.
"We will enjoy tonight and immediately turn our focus on FIU," concluded Jacobs.