Nov. 7, 2011
WASHINGTON - The Georgetown University volleyball team traveled to Tampa, Fla. for their final road game of the season to face the South Florida Bulls. Looking to continue their four-game winning streak and coming off a 6-2 October record, the Hoyas had momentum into the match, but were stalled in the Corral in straight sets.
The Hoyas are 14-11 on the season and 6-6 in BIG EAST play, while the Bulls are 10-15 on the season and 6-6 in conference play as well. South Florida won the match by scores of 25-17, 25-22 and 25-21.
"It was a tough match, a high pressure situation," Head Coach Arlisa Williams said after the tough loss. "It was important to us in the grand scheme of our goals, but as disappointed as we are; we know we can play better volleyball the next two games. On top of that, South Florida played a great match."
Freshman middle blocker Dani White (Mission Viejo, Calif./Mission Viejo) had a match-high .389 hitting percentage on eight kills, while also attaining three block assists and two digs.
In her homecoming game, freshman outside hitter Alex Johnson (Tampa, Fla./Plant) notched nine kills, one assist, one service ace, one block solo, two block assists and a team-high 12 points.
Senior setter Ashley Malone (San Jose, Calif./St. Francis) had a team-high 23 assists to complement three kills, one service aces, nine digs and one block assist.
"When we get back to practice this week, we'll need to focus on taking care of our side of the net, which we failed to do today unfortunately," Williams also said. "Two bright spots for our team today were Dani hitting an impressive .389 and us out-blocking them seven team blocks to six."
At the start of the first set, the Hoyas were able to be neck and neck with the Bulls, keeping either a tie game or a one to two-point lead. After a Johnson service ace to tie the game 9-9, the Bulls relinquished another two kills to extend the Hoyas advantage, but quickly caused consecutive unforced errors to come from behind and gain the lead.
Georgetown called a timeout at 17-13 to try and compose themselves to regain the lead and capture the first set. The timeout was of a bigger benefit for the Bulls as they went on a 4-point run, forcing a second Hoyas timeout at 21-14. Despite two kills by middle blocker Lindsay Wise (Raleigh, N.C./Raleigh Charter), the Hoyas could not regain ground and win the first set, dropping it by a score of 25-17.
The second set carried the momentum for the Bulls as they jumped from a slim 6-4 lead to a 13-7 margin, forcing a Georgetown timeout. Coming out of the break, there was maintenance of a four to five-point deficit, yet the Hoyas generated a spark and cut the lead to 18-16, making South Florida use a timeout. A Johnson kill and attack errors off of White serves further trimmed the lead to 21-19, giving the Hoyas the late run they needed.
After a USF timeout at 23-22, the Bulls got back-to-back kills to end the set and headed into intermission with a two-set lead. The third set was in the Hoyas' possession from the beginning as they owned a 7-2 lead on USF. Jumping out to a 10-4 lead, the Bulls battled back and forced attack errors on Georgetown, trimming the gap to two points. South Florida went on a run to trim the lead to one at 15-14 and force a Hoyas timeout.
After the rest, the Bulls were held to a two-point deficit until a White attack error broke the stalemate of 17 and gave South Florida the lead. They didn't relinquish it after that as they went on a run to force a Georgetown timeout at 20-18. An alternation of kills and attack errors by both teams gave the advantage to USF as they walked away with a 25-22 lead and a 3-0 match victory.
The Hoyas return home this Friday and Sunday to host both Cincinnati and Louisville, their final two games of the season.