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Courtesy: Chris Todd

Alabama State's season ends at Florida

Courtesy: Alabama State Sports Information
Release: 12/01/2017
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Florida 3, Alabama State 0 (25-9,25-13,25-9)

GAINESVILLE, Fla. - Alabama State fell to second-seeded Florida 3-0  at the Exactech Arena at Stephen C. O’Connell Center in the opening round of the NCAA Volleyball Championships Thursday night.

With the loss, the season comes to end for Alabama State (28-11). Meanwhile, Florida (26-1) advances to the second round where they will face Miami (Fla.) tomorrow night at Exactech Arena at 7 pm (est).

Bayle’ Bennett led the Lady Hornets with five kills, while Krysta Medearis added four in the opening round loss. The duo combined for nine of the 17 kills on the night, with the team being held to -.014 hitting by Florida – the second best team in the country in opponent hitting percentage. Justus Tuiolosega finished the night with 10 assists and seven digs, while Kayla Torres added five and Bennett four.

Meanwhile, Shainah Joseph led the Gators with nine kills, with Carli Snyder adding eight in the opening round win.

The meeting between the two teams was the third in four years in the opening round of the tournament, with all three taking place on the home floor of the Gators.

The loss brings an end to the celebrated careers of seniors Briana Dorsey, Ni’yesha Brown, Tuiolosega, Brittany Brown and Tamara Martin. The group played in four consecutive conference championship matches, winning three and making three trips to the NCAA Tournament in their careers.

Dorsey leaves the school with over 1,000 career points to go along with finishing fifth all-time at the school in kills and second in blocks, Ni’yesha Brown finishes eighth all-time in kills and Tuiolosega ninth all-time in assists.

The two-time defending SWAC champion Lady Hornets will return four starters from this past season, including SWAC Setter of the Year Kori Kutsch and All-SWAC Second Team selection Payten Clark in search of the fifth conference title in six years. The Lady Hornets also return a pair of preseason all-conference selections in Bayle’ Bennett and Krysta Medearis looking to continue the second-longest active winning streak in conference play (42 straight wins).