AVE MARIA, Fla. ( Sept. 28, 2023) – A solid effort from Florida National University’s volleyball team was not enough to secure a win as the Conquistadors fell 3-0 to Ave Maria University. The Gyrenes (8-8) captured their 16th win against the Conquistadors (1-6) in program history, improving to 10-2 at home.
The first set was a strong indicator of the back-and-forth battle brewing at the Tom Golisano Field House. The Gyrenes jumped to a 10-7 lead in the early going before a kill from Layla Cortez made it a 14-14 game. Weathering this FNU rally, the Gyrenes got themselves back ahead on a kill by Alayna Metherd 20-16. AMU went on a 5-2 run to claim the first set of the match in its favor. Isabella Armas had the lone service ace for FNU in the first, while AMU racked up four.
FNU’s signature intensity was on full display in the second frame. The Conquistadors commanded a 12-8 lead following a kill by Cortez. But FNU’s momentum fizzled out down the stretch as the Gyrenes put up five unanswered points to take a 13-12 lead.
Play became more of a tug of war as both teams looked to get any kind of run going. An assisted block from Gabriela Gonzalez and Elis Cordova-Millet had FNU standing 24-23 and forced a Gyrene timeout. Unfortunately for FNU, a couple of attack errors and a kill from Metherd were enough to give AMU a 26-24 win in the second and a 2-0 lead.
AMU closed out the game in the third, defeating FNU 25-20 in the set. The Gyrenes held an 11-8 lead about midway through the frame after a kill from Kylie Lacy. AMU managed to keep themselves just out of reach of FNU, throughout the entire set picking up two kills and a service ace to send the Conquistadors packing.
Cortez led all players with 13 kills and Ivette Sandoval picked up a team-high 14 assists. Juliana Santos and Sandoval had 10 digs apiece, while Gonzalez had four blocks.
Up Next: FNU heads to Brookline, Mass., for the CAC’s regular season tournament hosted by Fisher College Oct. 6.