Volleyball drops opener ASUN in five-set battle


JACKSONVILLE, Florida. – FGCU Volleyball dropped its ASUN opener against North Florida 3-2 on Friday.

The Eagles’ conference opener loss marked the first five-set battle of the season (25-20, 25-16, 25-27, 20-25 and 13-15). North Florida also ended the Green and Blue’s five-game winning streak. In the loss, FGCU fell to 10-4 overall (0-1 ASUN), while North Florida improved to 3-9 (1-0 ASUN).

“A tough loss but a fun and competitive game,” said the head coach Matt Botsford said. “We played so cleanly in the first two sets, but things started to change as we became a very high error on the attacking side. I loved our fight in the fifth and was really happy with the ability to our team to get chances through quality ground defense but we need to be better to finish plays we have made blocking a priority here at FGCU and to see a five set match where we have four is disappointing This is something we need to continue to address as we move forward.

The Eagles took a 2-0 lead and reached match point twice before suffering the reverse sweep. FGCU won the first set 25-20 and followed that up with a 25-16 victory in the second set. Going into the match, FGCU were 10-1 on the year winning the first set.

In the third set, the Vert et Bleu held 24-22 and a 25-24 match point advantage. However, North Florida pulled out a 27-25 victory to effectively turn the tide.

FGCU hit 0.148% in the fourth and 0.034 in the decisive fifth set, a stark contrast to their 0.476% in the second.

Les Vert et Bleu never led in the fourth as the Ospreys won the fourth set 25-20. North Florida went on to win the match against pre-season favorites ASUN with a 15-13 win in the fifth set. The fifth witnessed a four-point tie despite FGCU trailing 8-4 early.

FGCU showed flashes and struggles all night from the service line behind 12 aces but accompanied by 15 service errors.

Four Eagles produced double-digit wins, Erin Shomaker (16), Lawrence Clark (12), Emma Szypszak (10 and Lily markers (ten). Chelsey Lockey achieved his fifth double-double of the season with 44 assists and 10 digs.

FGCU aims to raise the bar on Saturday in Jacksonville (7-6, 1-0 ASUN). The first serve against the Dolphins is set for 5 p.m. The match will be broadcast on YouTube.


Square. Name (year) FGCU career kills
1. Cortney VanLiew (2017-21) 1,657
2. Amanda Carroll (2015-19) 1,483
3. Brooke Youngquist (2004-07) 1,173
4. Olivia Mesner (2011-14) 1,132
5. Erin Shomaker (2019- 1,073

Square. Name (University and Years) ASUN Career Searches
1. Shelley Walroth (Jacksonville: 2006-09) 2,456
2. Dana Axener (FGCU: 2018- 2,166
3.Ann Mullins (Lipscomb: 2005-07) 1,969
4. Nicole Baran (North Florida: 2009-12) 1,900
5. Adriana Nieto (NJIT: 2015-18) 1,878

Square. Name (year) FGCU Career Aid
1. Maggie Rick (2015-18) 4,540
2.Gigi Meyer (2011-14) 4,408
3. Chelsey Lockey (2018- 3,999
4.Chandra Lefever (2006-07, 09) 3,108
5. Laura Manovill (2004-05) 1,809

For full coverage of the volleyball schedule, follow the Eagles on Twitter at @FGCU_VBon Instagram at @FGCU_VBon Facebook at /FGCUVolleyball and online at FGCUathletics.com. You can also sign up to receive news about FGCU volleyball or other programs straight to your inbox by visiting www.fgcuathletics.com/email.

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Matt Botsford completed his eighth season as the head coach of the FGCU women’s volleyball program in 2021 after being hired on February 10, 2014. During his tenure, Botsford-led teams compiled an overall record of 193- 63 (.754), including a 96- 21 (.821) record ASUN read. Including last year’s unprecedented spring season, he has taken the program to heights it has never seen in the Division I era (2007-present) – recording at least 20 wins over six of the past seven seasons and at least 10 conference wins. play every season. In 2018, he led the program to its first regular season championship since 2012 (fourth overall) and its first-ever ASUN Tournament title, NCAA Tournament appearance, NCAA Tournament win, and victory over a ranked team. His first two campaigns resulted in second-place finish in the ASUN regular season, and the next two saw the Eagles advance to the tournament championship. Now the team has won four straight regular season titles, including two ASUN Tournament Championship titles. On September 10, 2016, Botsford led his team to a five-set victory over Indiana at Alico Arena, which marked the program’s first-ever victory against a team from a Power-5 conference. In 2018 he also led the team to a win over Miami, Florida – the Power 5 program’s first-ever road win, and the Eagles followed that up with a straight-sets win over the Hurricanes at a neutral site in 2019. In 2021, Botsford led the Eagles to 27 wins, tying the program record previously set in the 2016, 2018 and 2019 seasons, and an NCAA First Round win over Texas Tech. The victory over the Red Raiders marked the second NCAA first-round victory for the Greens and Blues following their 3-2 victory over No. 13 UCF in Orlando in 2018.

FGCU Athletics sponsors events in November and April to benefit the FGCU Campus Food Pantry (www.fgcu.edu/foodpantry) and Harry Chapin Food Bank (www.harrychapinfoodbank.org), FGCU’s Charities of Choice Athletics. For more information, including how to contribute, please visit www.fgcu.edu/foodpantry and use the hashtag #FeedFGCU to help raise awareness.

FGCU teams have combined to win an incredible 92 conference regular season and tournament titles in just 14+ seasons at the Division I level. Additionally, in just 10+ seasons of DI playoff eligibility , the Eagles have fielded 45 teams or individuals competing in the NCAA Championships. In 2022, the men’s golf team became the first program to qualify for the NCAA Tournament. Eight FGCU programs ranked in the top 25 nationally in their respective sports, including women’s basketball (#20, 2021-22), beach volleyball (#20, 2022) and men’s soccer (2018, 2019) and women’s football. (2018) as four of the most recent. In 2016-17, the Vert et Bleu posted the department’s best sixth place finish in the DI-AAA Learfield Directors’ Cup and top 100 nationally, ahead of several Power-5 and FBS institutions. In 2018-19, the Eagles had an ASUN and Florida State’s top seven teams won the NCAA Public Recognition Award for their rate of academic progression in their sport. FGCU also collectively achieved a record 3.50 classroom GPA in the fall 2020 semester and outperformed the general undergraduate college population for 26 consecutive semesters. In five of the past six semesters (Fall 2019 – Fall 2021), the Eagles have reached another milestone as all 15 programs have achieved a team GPA of 3.0 or higher in each. The Eagles also served an all-time high of 7,200 volunteer hours in 2017 – being recognized as one of two finalists for the inaugural NACDA Community Service Award presented by the Fiesta Bowl.


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