Gators sweep Rebels to start spring volleyball season

Special to Gatorsports.com
Florida's Thayer Hall posted eight kills with a .353 attack percentage Friday against Ole Miss.

OXFORD, Miss. — The 10th-ranked Florida volleyball team served up the spring portion of the schedule with a sweep Friday over Ole Miss.

“In only one match we were able to see progress from the fall," UF coach Mary Wise said. "Our goal now is to be able to make the necessary adjustments for tomorrow’s match.”

Florida moves to 7-2 in this conference-only format, while Ole Miss drops to 0-7 overall.

The Gators won the first two sets in close fashion, taking the first 25-20 and the second 25-21. Florida then clinched the match with a decisive 25-13 victory in the final frame.

T’ara Ceasar led the offensive charge for the Gators, notching 12 kills in the match on a .348 clip.

Holly Carlton posted a phenomenal .667 clip with eight kills on the afternoon, while Thayer Hall posted eight kills of her own with a .353 attack percentage. In her Gator debut, Lauren Forte posted three kills on three swings.

Marlie Monserez anchored Florida’s offense, dishing out 31 assists in the three-setter. She led the team to a .431 hit clip on the afternoon – the team’s best performance of the 2020-21 season.

The Gators held Ole Miss to the .101 clip on the afternoon, including a -.083 in the final frame. Nnedi Okammor led the defensive effort at the net, totaling four blocks in the match, while Carlton added two of her own.

In just her second start in the libero jersey, Elli McKissock tallied a team-high seven digs. Monserez added five, while Ceasar pitched in four of her own.

Florida racked up five service aces in the match, led by a career-high two from McKissock.

The Gators are right back in action Saturday to close out the series with the Rebels. First serve is slated 3 p.m. ET on the SEC Network + and can be heard on 98.1 FM/850 AM.