April 13, 2013
SIESTA KEY, Fla. - The Tulane University sand volleyball team opened the Fiesta at Siesta Key in fine fashion as the Green Wave posted wins over Florida Gulf Coast and College of Charleston on Friday at the Fifth Annual Fiesta at Siesta Key.
The Wave made quick work of Florida Gulf Coast University, sweeping the Eagles 5-0, before downing College of Charleston in the nightcap, 3-2. With the wins, Tulane improves to 9-4 on the year.
"The girls did a great job today," Tulane director of volleyball Sinisa Momic said. "It's nice to start this weekend's event with a solid performance and a couple of wins on the first day. It was good to see us have a good all-around effort and a 5-0 win against FGCU followed by another win against a good team like College of Charleston.
"The great thing about today was to see some of our teams finding a way to win when they were behind, and coming back. That is a sign of maturity and improvement, and understanding how to play in windy conditions like we had today."
Three of Tulane's five wins against Florida Gulf Coast came in straight sets as senior Elysa Jackson and freshman Courtney Liddle teamed to down Kaitlin Holm and Whitney Masters 21-19, 21-14 on Court 2, sophomore Grace Weaver and Anna Wruck combined to sweep Olivia Mesner and Lindsey Childs 21-18, 21-19 in No. 3 action, and junior Azarri Badawi and rookie Jackie Wegner joined forces to defeat Christine Pinder and Liga Stautneice 21-13, 22-20 in No. 4 play.
The final match of the day, however, was a much different situation as the outcome of the Tulane/College of Charleston contest came down to the bitter end. Badawi and Wegner scored Tulane's first point of the contest with a 21-17, 21-15 win over Taeler Davis and Sloane White, but College of Charleston tied things up at 1-1 with Emily Shelton and Catey Warren combining to defeat Moore and Utt 21-14, 21-10.
Weaver and Wruck put the Wave back on top momentarily with a straight-sets 21-16, 21-14 victory over Kelly Kolich and Emily Neideffer in No. 3 action. C of C's Darcy and Dorton and Andi Zbojniewicz came right back with a 16-21, 21-14, 21-8 win over Liddle and senior Milica Jovic to make it 2-2.
The team outcame rested in the outcome of the teams' top tandems, and once again, Asprey and Martone emerge victorious as the pair downed Melissa Morello and Lizzie Theesfeld 21-17, 24-44.
The Fiesta at Siesta Key continues throughout the weekend with pairs play and the Green Wave will look to help build their postseason resume with the hopes of being selected to participate in the AVCA National Championship. The Sand Volleyball Championship will feature both team and pairs brackets, and is scheduled to run from May 3-5 in Gulf Shores, Ala.
TULANE GREEN WAVE DEFEAT FLORIDA GULF COAST EAGLES: 5-0
No. 1: Sophie Asprey / Cori Martone (TLN) def. Brooke Kohler / Brittany Muse (FGCU) - 15-21, 21-10, 15-13
No. 2: Elysa Jackson / Courtney Liddle (TLN) def. Kaitlin Holm / Whitney Masters (FGCU) - 21-19, 21-14
No. 3: Grace Weaver / Anna Wruck (TLN) def. Olivia Mesner / Lindsey Childs (FGCU) - 21-18, 21-19
No. 4: Azarri Badawi / Jackie Wegner (TLN) def. Christine Pinder / Liga Strautniece (FGCU) - 21-13, 22-20
No. 5: Mackenzie Moore / Olivia Utt (TLN) def. Natalie Feathers / Meyer (FGCU) - 21-14, 21-23, 15-8
TULANE GREEN WAVE DEFEAT COLLEGE OF CHARLESTON COUGARS: 3-2
No. 1: Sophie Asprey / Cori Martone (TLN) def. Melissa Morello / Lizzie Theesfeld (CofC) - 21-17, 24-22
No. 2: Darcy Dorton / Andi Zbojniewicz (CofC) def. Milica Jovic / Courtney Liddle (TLN) - 16-21, 21-14, 21-8
No. 3: Grace Weaver / Anna Wruck (TLN) def. Kelly Kolich / Emily Neideffer (CofC) - 21-16, 21-14
No. 4: Azarri Badawi / Jackie Wegner (TLN) def. Taeler Davis / Sloane White (CofC) - 21-7, 21-15
No. 5: Emily Shelton / Catey Warren (CofC) def. Mackenzie Moore / Olivia Utt (TLN) - 21-14, 21-10