Gamecocks Clinch Postseason Birth; Fall on the Road to FGCU

JACKSONVILLE, Fl. – The Jacksonville State University volleyball team snapped an eight-game winning streak, falling to FGCU 3-0 in the final game of the ASUN Crossover event on the campus of Jacksonville University Sunday evening.

The Gamecocks fell to 19-5 overall and 9-2 in conference play in a loss to FGCU (17-4, 11-0). JSU still sits in first place of the ASUN West division and with an Eastern Kentucky loss tonight, the Gamecocks have clinched a spot in the ASUN Conference Tournament to be held in Ft. Meyers, Florida, Nov. 18-20.

With clinching the postseason birth, the Gamecocks will make the postseason for the sixth consecutive season and the fourth time under Head Coach Todd Garvey.

“I love the way we batted. I know it is not always easy to keep battling when things aren’t fully going your way, but I was really proud of the way we battled, and I think we proved we can play with that team. We have to play a little bit better defensively to get over the hump. I feel like we started off slow in the first set but then outplayed them the rest of the first set,” said Garvey. “In the second set we had two or three set points and we just have to finish it out. I really love the way we played in the first two sets, but the third set got away from us a little bit. I loved what we did offensively, but we have to play better defensively.”

Senior Lena Kindermann further cemented her name in the Gamecock record book, climbing inside the top ten all-time in career-kills with 1,226 after recording 11 in tonight’s contest. She currently sits in ninth place behind Charis Ludkte with 1,272.

“She’s put in a lot of work, The coolest thing to see is how much she believes in herself now. As a freshman she really didn’t. She didn’t have a lot of confidence as a freshman, so to see her grow in that aspect is awesome,” added Garvey. “She’s got every shot in the book and knows when to hit what and is an unbelievable player so I’m proud of her.”

Senior Lexie Libs added 42 assists in the loss and is just nine assists away from reaching 4,000 in her career at JSU, a feat only three others have achieved in program history.

Addie Halverson led the Gamecocks with 12 kills in the match while Erin Carmichael had a team-high 11 digs.

JSU fell behind to begin the first set but worked their way back, cutting the lead to two, 21-19, following a Kindermann kill. The Gamecocks pushed the Eagles to the end but fell just short, 25-22, in the first set.

A kill from Libs put JSU ahead 6-3 to begin the second set before the Eagles responded with a 7-1 run, taking a 10-7 lead. Kindermann evened the match 16-16 with her fifth kill, moving into the top ten in all-time career-kills at JSU. The Gamecocks held set point three times down the stretch of the second set but were unable to put FGCU away, falling 29-27.

JSU held an early 5-3 lead to begin the third set, but the Eagles stormed back to control the set, 15-13. A quick 5-0 run put the Gamecocks behind 20-13. A late comeback effort fell short as JSU dropped the third set, 25-20 and fell 3-0 in the match for just the third time this season. The previous two sweeps were to top-25 teams in Purdue and Tennessee.

FGCU outhit the Gamecocks .393 to .258 and held an 11-6 advantage in blocks.
 
“I think this will fuel us to keep working hard the next three weeks, “said Garvey. “We have improved so much over the course of the season, but I think it might be the fuel that we need to start peaking at the right time and keep pushing really hard every day in practice to get better.”

The Gamecocks return to action next weekend hosting Bellarmine on Friday, Oct. 29 at 6 p.m. and Eastern Kentucky at 4:30 p.m. in THE PETE. The Gamecocks will honor Seniors Lexie Libs and Kaylie Milton for Senior Night on Saturday.  

Stay up to date with the Gamecocks at JSUgamecocksports.com and follow the team on social media @JSUGamecocksVB.
 
 
 
 

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