FSW Claims First Suncoast Conference Win

Julia de Sa (Picture by Brad Young/BradYoungPhoto.com)
Julia de Sa (Picture by Brad Young/BradYoungPhoto.com)
BRADENTON, Fla.- The Florida SouthWestern State Buccaneers accomplished another program first in their inaugural campaign on Tuesday, going on the road to defeat State College of Florida 3-0 to claim their first Suncoast Conference victory in history. 
The Bucs got off to a slow start, falling behind 5-3 in the first, but they would battle back to even things up at at 12 midway through the first.  It remained a tie game at 15 when a 5-1 FSW run, led by back to back aces from Viktoria Ivanova pushed the Bucs out to a 20-16 lead that they would never give up again.  A big block from Julia de Sa and Yasso Amin gave FSW set point and a miscommunication from the Manatees would seal the deal for the Bucs in a 25-20 win to take a 1-0 lead in the match. 
The second was FSW's from the start.  The Bucs raced out to a 10-4 lead thanks in part to a pair of de Sa kills and an ace from Anna Leweling.  They stretched that lead to nine on a blast from Lexi Hurtado, before three kills in four points for de Sa clinched the set for the Bucs at 25-17 to go up 2-0.  
With their outsides red hot, the Bucs continued to set the ball to the pin in the third, getting kills from de Sa and Hurtado to push them out to a 12-9 lead as they eyed the sweep. An ace from Hannah Pabon later in the set gave the Bucs a five point cushion at 19-14 and three late kills from Hurtado wrapped up a 25-18 third set victory for FSW to finish off the sweep. The Purple and Aqua finished the third with 17 kills, including 8 by Hurtado, hitting a match best .355 in the period. 
FSW hit .260 as a team in the win while holding SCF to just .153 hitting in the match.  It was a two headed monster at the front of the Buc attack as de Sa finished with a 14 kills, 14 dig double-double while Hurtado used eight third set kills to earn her fourth double digit kill effort with 10. Ivanova led FSW with four aces while also adding eight digs.  Marina Alonso dished out a team best 28 assists and Yasso Amin was in on three of FSW's five blocks in the match.  
The Bucs improve to 9-6 overall and 1-2 in Suncoast Conference action while the Manatees' struggles continue as they fall to 2-14 overall and 0-3 in conference play on the season. 
FSW will continue an important stretch this weekend at home at Suncoast Credit Union Arena when they host Indian River Friday at 6 PM and Palm Beach State Saturday at noon.