ATLANTA - The University of Georgia volleyball team upset 10th-ranked Georgia Tech Friday evening in front of a crowd of 5,303 at McCamish Pavilion, 3-1 (21-25, 28-26, 25-21, 25-21).
Georgia improves to 8-2 on the season with its fifth-straight victory and delivering Georgia Tech (7-1) its first loss of the season. The win is Georgia's first over a top-10 opponent since 2020 (at then-#5 Florida) and its first win against Tech in Atlanta since Sept. 19, 2014. It's the fifth win over a ranked opponent in the Tom Black era.
Sophie Fischer led the offense with 13 kills followed closely by 11 kills from each Estelle Haugen and Kacie Evans. Haugen shined in the contest, putting career highs in kills and blocks (six). Tori Haper also marked a career high with nine kills.
Along with her 11 kills, Evans tallied a season-high 15 digs for her first double-double of the year. She also led Georgia with a season-best four aces from the service line.
Setter Clara Brower earned her third double-double of 2023, dishing out 39 assists and putting up 14 digs, tying a career high. She was also responsible for three aces including one to close out the third set.
On the defense, freshman Ceci Gooch. recorded a season-best seven blocks, one behind Fischer's eight. Libero Mallory Downing had 10 digs, the third Bulldog to tip double-digit digs.
As a team, Georgia put up a season-best 15 blocks, tied for sixth-most in a four-set match in Georgia's rally scoring era.
After falling behind 4-0 to begin the match, Georgia rebounded to tie the set at 5-all. A 3-0 Georgia run gave the Dogs their first lead, 11-9. Tech recaptured the lead with back-to-back aces, prompting a Georgia break, 14-12. Knotted at 17, the Yellow Jackets strung together four straight to go up 21-17 and exhaust Georgia's timeouts. The Dogs cut it to one on a Haugen ace, forcing Georgia Tech to use its first timeout, 21-19. The Yellow Jackets held on to take the first set, 25-21. Harper, Fischer, and Haugen all recorded two kills each in the opener while the Bulldogs combined for four blocks.
Down 8-4 in the second, a 7-0 Georgia run propelled the Dogs out in front 11-8, capped by a Brower ace. Georgia's lengthened the lead to six, 19-13. Tech responded with a 6-0 run to erase the Dogs' lead and exhaust both Georgia timeouts, tied at 19. Tech kept the momentum and drew set point at 24-21. The Dogs never quit, responding with four-straight points to flip the script and draw set point on a Harper/Fischer block, 25-24. The set raged on, tied at 25 then 26. A Fischer kill and a Tech error sealed the set for the Bulldogs, 28-26. Fischer totaled five kills in the set with three blocks.
In set three, it was Georgia that came out strong, going up 6-1 and forcing a very early Yellow Jacket timeout. A 5-1 Georgia Tech run narrowed UGA's lead to 8-6. All square at 17, Georgia won four of the next five points to go up 21-18 and prompt a GT break. Georgia widened the lead to 23-19 then Tech strung together back-to-back points to slice it to two, 23-21. A kill by Gooch and a Brower ace finished the set for Georgia 25-21, giving the Dogs the 2-1 advantage in the match.
With momentum on their side, the Bulldogs jumped out to a quick 7-3 lead in the fourth. The frame remained tight, but Georgia was the first to reach the 20-point mark, 20-18. An Evans ace put Georgia back in front by three, 22-19, and prompted Tech's final timeout. A Fischer/Haugen block and Evans kill drew set point, 24-20. A Yellow Jacket attack went long, clinching the match in four sets for the Dogs, 25-21.
Up next, the Bulldogs take on San Diego Saturday in O'Keefe Gymnasium on the campus of Georgia Tech. First serve against the Toreros is set for 6 p.m., ET.