The Official Website of the Southeastern Conference
The Official Website of the Southeastern Conference

Florida defeats LIU Brooklyn in straight sets

2409 days ago
Florida Athletics
Photo: Florida Athletics

GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- No. 17 Florida blanked LIU Brooklyn Friday afternoon in the Stephen C. O'Connell Center to cap of the 2015 regular season on a high note. The Gators (22-6) celebrated their five seniors Simone Antwi, Mackenzie Dagostino, Gabby Mallette, Nikki O'Rourke and Živa Recek in a pre-match ceremony in front of over 2,000 Gator fans before posting 25-16, 25-16 and 25-19 straight-set wins against the Blackbirds (14-14).

Fittingly on Senior Day, Antwi hit .800 to lead the Gators with a team-tying eight kills on 10 errorless swings. Antwi added two blocks, as did Mallette, while sophomore middle Rhamat Alhassan posted a floor-tying six roofs alongside Dagostino's six as the Orange and Blue put up nine blocks on the afternoon to LIU Brooklyn's three.

Antwi and Alhassan both had eight kills to lead the Gators, while all five of Dagostino's swings went for kills in the Friday afternoon three-set affair. Florida held the Blackbirds to just 22 kills -- second-least for a UF opponent this season -- and was perfect on serve receive with zero reception errors for just the second time in 2015.

While the senior class chalked up its 105th win (105-19, .847), Friday's match also served as an opportunity to get some of the Gators' youth on the court, including redshirt freshman Lindsey Rogers, who served up one of UF's eight service aces on the afternoon. After the seniors took their final bow out of the match to standing ovations, it was freshman middle blocker Taelor Kellum who came up with match point on her third career kill as a Gator.

Recek and sophomore outside hitter Carli Snyder both dropped in two aces to lead UF's efforts and O'Rourke flew around for 14 digs to lead the Gators on the defensive end.

Serving runs were a strong theme for the Gators to rout the Blackbirds, as UF put together a total of six runs of four or more points throughout the match. Recek had four-point serving runs in all three sets, while junior right-side Alex Holston put together a six-point run in the second to aid UF's efforts. Rogers used a five-point tear in the third and final set to extend UF's lead to double-digits at 22-12.

Friday's match served as a unique doubleheader with men's hoops as the basketball Gators face FGCU in the nightcap in the O'Dome.