North Florida Fends off FAMU in Five

North Florida Fends off FAMU in Five

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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -  For the second time in as many matches UNF (9-12) churned out a balanced attack to outlast its opponents in five. This time the Ospreys fended off visiting FAMU (6-15) behind another Solimar Cestero double-double and efficient hitting from their middles Tuesday, Oct. 15.

Cestero's third consecutive double-double was backed up by .429 hitting and double-digit kill performances from both Emma Dixon and Taryn Griffey. Freshman Maddie Norris contributed career highs in both digs and kills, tallying nine of each.

"I felt good and it's hard coming in as a freshman but you just go out there and do your job and do what your team needs," Norris said. "It was so important [to contribute in the second set] to bring the momentum to the team and keep pushing to finish it out."

UNF 3, FAMU 2 (22-25, 25-21, 25-15, 23-25, 15-12)

Inside the Sets

  • Set 1: Neither team hit a high percentage in the first set but FAMU committed five fewer errors as the Rattlers rode out an early lead for the 25-22 opening-set win … Maria Yvett-Garcia tallied a set-high four assists … There were zero lead changes and two tie scores in the first set.
  • Set 2: Some new faces and a sparkling set efficiency wise allowed UNF to even the match with a 25-21 set-two win … Tied 9-9, Cestero unleashed a resounding kill, Norris posted an ace and FAMU's Alexys Mann committed an attack error, giving UNF a three-point lead … UNF didn't relinquish the lead or allow FAMU to tie despite the Rattlers getting within two on five more occasions … UNF hit .407 in the second set.
  • Set 3: Five blocks, .333 hitting, two aces and seven FAMU errors all factored into the Ospreys' dominant third set … A Griffey solo block gave UNF a 6-5 lead before Norris joined her for another block to establish an 8-5 lead … Norris had three more kills over the next five UNF points to fuel UNF.
  • Set 4: FAMU set the tone early, racing ahead to an 11-3 lead … UNF cut it to 11-6, forcing a FAMU timeout … FAMU led the rest of the set before UNF stormed back with a 3-0 run to tie it at 23 … A service error and an attack error permitted FAMU to send it to five.
  • Set 5: A crazy fifth set saw 10 ties and five lead changes … Dixon was huge late, putting up four of UNF's eight kills while FAMU hit .294 to UNF's .412 … Tied 12-12, a key kill from Dixon followed by another big kill from Miriam Stingl made it 14-12 … Norris sealed FAMU's fate with an ace.

Leaders By the Numbers

  • Cestero | 19 kills, 11 digs
  • Griffey | 12 kills, four blocks, four digs, .429 hitting
  • Dixon | 11 kills, four blocks, .429 hitting
  • Askew | 57 assists, seven digs
  • Moro | 26 digs


  • Maria Yvett-Garcia | 19 kills, 11 digs
  • Ilayda Nurkan | 23 assists
  • Nahla Muhammad | 17 digs
  • Alexys Mann | Five blocks


  • The Ospreys move to 10-9 all-time against FAMU.
  • UNF is 7-4 in matches played against the Rattlers in Jacksonville.
  • Grace Youngblood posted a career-high 12 digs.
  • Cestero has 65 kills over her last three matches.
  • UNF is 3-2 in five-set matches this season.
  • Seven matches have gone 3-2 against FAMU in series history, with UNF winning four.
  • There were 314 combined attack attempts in the match.
  • UNF outblocked FAMU, 8-7.
  • UNF had three players with double-digit digs and three with double-digit kills.

Wright's Words
"We got the job done tonight and an ugly win is definitely better than a pretty loss," head coach Kristen Wright said. "I know our girls are tired but I'm really proud of our depth stepping up. We looked for a lot of new faces to come through in tight situations from Grace, Angie, Norris, Bria to Pete [Grace Peterson]. And when you do that with confidence it just creates camaraderie and allows you to keep pushing each other in the gym."

Up Next
The Ospreys get back into ASUN play when they host North Alabama Friday, Oct. 18, at 7 p.m.

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