Tampa Volleyball Falls to the Saint Leo Lions in Four Sets

Tampa Volleyball Falls to the Saint Leo Lions in Four Sets

ST. LEO, Fla. – The University of Tampa Spartans fall to the Saint Leo Lions in four sets during an away showdown. The Lions defeated the Spartans with set scores of 25-17, 20-25, 25-13, and 25-16. Saint Leo moves to 8-3 in the SSC while Tampa falls to 6-5. 

Final: Saint Leo 3, Tampa 1  (25-17, 20-25, 25-13, 25-16)
Records: Tampa Spartans (11-11, 6-5 SSC), Saint Leo Lions (14-5, 8-3 SSC)
Location: Marion Bowman Activities Center | St. Leo, Fla.
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Set 1 | Saint Leo took the first set 25-17. The most dynamic player for the Spartans, in the first set, was sophomore outside hitter Nicole Dominguez. Dominguez ended set one with four kills at a .250 hitting percentage while digging the ball on five different occasions. Following Dominguez on offense was fellow outside Sorrel Houghton and middle blocker Taylor Fosler, who each had four kills apiece. Senior Molly McAlvany suited up as the starting libero for Tampa logging a team-high of six digs and sophomore Sammy Mueller acted as the primary setter with 10 assists. Ultimately, the Lions just out hit the Spartans. Saint Leo ended the set hitting .242 as a team while UT had a team hitting percentage of .044.
Set 2 | Tampa took the second 25-20. Offensively, UT was able to hit .406 as a team compared to Saint Leo's .205 kill percentage. Behind the offensive efforts for the Spartans was middle blocker Alexandra Misca with five kills, followed by right side hitter Nylah Demps with four. Once again libero McAlvany led the team on digs with five, followed by Mueller with four. Additionally, Mueller dished out 14 more assists, heading into intermission with 24.
Set 3 | Following intermission, Saint Leo came out determined to protect their house. The Lions managed to climb to a 14-1 lead before Tampa started to battle their way back into the set. Coach Chris Catanach made many changes to the lineup, bringing in outside Shelby Joslin, right-side Melissa Elias, defensive specialist Marisa Beisner, middle blockers Danielle Christian and Courtney Randazzo, and setter Jen Aprile. Despite a hard-fought battle, the Spartans fell into too big of a hole and were not able to dig their way out. Saint Leo took the set 25-13.
Set 4 | Hoping to bounce back from an ugly third set, Catanach moved back to his original lineup to start the fourth. Coming out of the gates, it was freshman Sorrel Houghton who had the hot hand for Tampa's offense with two back-to-back kills. Combined, Houghton and Fosler ended the match with 17 kills, with eight and nine respectively. Setter Mueller ended the match with 29 total assists, while McAlvany logged a team high of 18 digs. Saint Leo won the match, with a final set score of 25-16.

• Tampa leads the all-time series against the Lions 83-5. The Spartans have lost the last four matchups.

Tampa will continue the 2017 season with a road match against the Fighting Knights of Lynn University on Thursday the 26th.  Live stats and a live video webcast will be provided through www.tampaspartans.com

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