Written by Niamani Carlyle-Hollis, Staff Writer
The Valdosta State Volleyball team recorded their 20th consecutive home win over the University of West Florida with a nail biting 3-2 victory on Tuesday night. A record 443 spectators, which is the biggest crown in VSU volleyball history, rallied behind the home team to help them secure the big win.
It was a hard fought, back and forth battle as Valdosta State was able to take control of the first set with a 25-22 win after making a rally to come back after being down 9-14 in the first set. The University of West Florida did not back down however and took control of the next two sets with 25-15 and 25-16 consecutive wins.
Down 2-1 in match sets, the Lady Blazers went on a 6 point stretch after UWF scored the first 3 points of the fourth set. Both teams battled it out to take control, but after 5 ties throughout the set, Senior Lea Jacklen came through big time for Valdosta State with a blazing kill following a costly error committed by UWF to give VSU the 27-25 victory.
In the 5th and final set, VSU jumped out and caught fire immediately and scored 5 of the first 6 points recorded in the set. UWF attempted to make a comeback of their own and were able to cute the score to within a 1 point margin with VSU on top 5-4. VSU setter Jessica Codato had other plans in mind along with Susanna Peonia, who both delivered crucial kills needed to secure the victory for VSU.
Key players of the game were Antia Rodrigues-Sanchez, who recorded 15 kills, Susanna Peonia added 14 kills of her own, and Jessica Codato recorded her 12th double-double of the season with 16 digs and 43 assists.
With this victory under their belt, the Lady Blazers overall record improved to 15-5, 10-2 in the Gulf South Conference and they also gave UWF their first GSC loss of the season.
Next on the agenda, the Lady Blazers I’ll be heading to Tiger territory as they travel to Livingston, Alabama to face the University of West Alabama in another Gulf South Conference matchup.