Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

No. 9 Florida hands Alabama volleyball a 5-game losing streak despite gritty performance

Courtesy of UA Athletics

Volleyball traveled to Gainesville, Florida, this weekend to take on No. 9 Florida. This game has been Alabama’s most contested yet.  

The game ended in three sets (22-25, 27-29, 19-25) with yet another loss for the Crimson Tide, leaving the team with zero SEC wins out of five games played thus far, and a 10-5 record for the whole season.  

Although volleyball is usually played to 25 points, one team must win by 2, which is why set two’s score is so high. Despite falling behind earlier in the game, Alabama came back and made the game the team’s closest sets of the season.  

Despite the loss, middle blocker Chaise Campbell left the game with a sense of hope. For her, it was an eye-opening experience to witness Alabama’s ability to hold its own against some of the best teams in the country. 

“Coach tells us all the time we can compete with anybody,” Campbell said. “Now seeing how we compete with a high-ranked team really opens our eyes, because we have so many more matches coming up, so this game really puts it into perspective for us.”   

Starting outside hitter Micah Gryniewicz sat out again this game to nurse her injury, leaving outside hitter Sami Jacobs to play in her spot again. Jacobs had an impressive game with eight kills. 

Campbell and fellow middle blocker Alyiah Wells each also had fantastic games with 15 and 12 kills, respectively. Campbell even boasts a .700 hitting percentage this game with a career-best 15 kills on 20 attacks, the best of any hitter on either team besides the Gator’s middle blocker Gabbi Essix, who had one kill on one attack. 

Florida’s hitters AC Fitzpatrick, Kennedy Martin and Anna Dixon gave the Crimson Tide a lot of trouble with a combined 34 kills among the three of them. Alabama was able to get only two block assists from Wells and outside hitter Kendyl Reaugh this game, leaving the defensive specialists, libero and setter to pick up the slack. This led to libero Victoria Schmer’s season-high 17 digs, setter Callie Kieffer’s 11, and Reaugh’s 9 out of Alabama’s 52 total digs.  

Despite picking up an old habit that had seemingly improved in past games, resulting in a total of 10 service errors, Alabama managed to outperform Florida’s 13 errors. However, this wasn’t enough to secure a one-set win for the Crimson Tide. 

Freshman setter Kieffer continues to develop with not only 35 assists out of Alabama’s 43 total but also managing three kills for the team with a percentage of .333. She also managed her fifth double-double of the season due to her number of assists and 11 digs. Schmer and Reaugheach had three assists.  

Despite the team’s losing streak, head coach Rashinda Reed continued to express her pride in the team, and how she expects greatness to soon follow Alabama volleyball.  

“I’m very proud of these girls, I think that they battled,” Reed said. “There’s a lesson to be learned in every match, what these girls learned with Tennessee, Kentucky and now Florida is that we can battle with all of these teams. We can do something that’s pretty incredible.”  

The team will now return home to prepare for its Homecoming week game against the Missouri Tigers, to be held in Tuscaloosa’s own Foster Auditorium this Wednesday at 7 p.m. CT. 

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