FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. - The No. 8 Florida Gators defeated the Southern Illinois Salukis in four sets on Saturday in the finale of the Lumberjack Invitational.
Florida dropped the first set 25-17, before coming back and winning the next three sets - 25-12, 25-10 and 25-16.
Rachael Kramer posted 15 kills in the victory, followed by 12 by Thayer Hall. Holly Carlton added seven, while Taelor Kellum recorded six of her own.
Allie Monserez recorded 36 assists in the four sets and Allie Gregory led the team with 16 digs.
As a squad, the Gators recorded seven blocks, six of which came from Kramer.
The Gators return back to action on Wednesday for the Fresh From Florida Sunshine Showdown against Florida State. The match is set for 6 p.m. in Tallahassee, Fla. and will air on the ACC Network Extra.
How it Happened
Southern Illinois got off to a 4-2 lead in the first set, but Florida battled back to tie the frame at 6-6. The Salukis went on a 10-3 run in the middle of the set to take 16-9 lead and took control of the momentum. Florida got to within five points at 18-13, but four Gator errors over the last portion of the game secured the first set for Southern Illinois.
Florida hit .185 in the frame, led by three kills from Rachael Kramer and two kills by Allie Monserez.
The Gators came out with a fire in the second frame, taking an 8-5 lead after two kills apiece by Holly Carlton and Taelor Kellum. The lead was extended after Paige Hammons went on a six-serve scoring run, giving Florida the 14-6 lead. From that point on, the Salukis would not get closer than nine points. UF hit an astounding .519 in the second set, recording 16 kills - including six from Kramer. Through two sets, Kramer hit .818 with her line sitting at 9/0/11. Florida got out to a 7-3 lead behind the serves of both Paige Hammons and Rachael Kramer and would hold control of the frame the rest of the way. Freshmen Paula Cerame and Riley Fischer stepped up at the service line, recording runs of four points and six points, respectively.
The Gators hit .333 with nine kills in the third set and Thayer Hall led the way with three kills in the frame. Kramer - who hit .733 through three sets - and Carlton each added two kills apiece.
The Gators got up early in the fourth set, taking an 8-3 lead and did not look back from there. Chanelle Hargreaves and Allie Gregory teamed up for a 5-1 service run, giving Florida the 14-4 lead. Paula Cerame then added a six-point service run of her own to give the Gators a 21-6 advantage. Southern Illinois made a run to make it 24-16, but Florida was able to shut down the Salukis to clinch the victory. Lauren Dooley and Morgyn Greer both made appearances in the final set, recording a kill apiece.
Florida only hit .128 in the set, but racked up 15 kills to ensure the victory. Thayer Hall posted five kills in the final frame, followed by four by Rachael Kramer.
- Rachael Kramer and Allie Monserez were named to the Lumberjack Invitational All-Tournament Team
- Two Gators were in double-digit kills - Kramer (15), Hall (12). Kramer finished the day hitting .636, her best mark of the season
- Allie Gregory and Paige Hammons each notched 16 and 14 digs, respectively
- All 17 Gators saw action in today's match
- Florida moves to 1-1 all-time against Southern Illinois and 1-0 in the Mary Wise-era
- UF is now 5-3 on the season and 2-1 in neutral site matches
- Five of Florida's eight matches have been four-setters - the Gators hold a 4-1 record in four set matches