Gainesville, FL - Junior Florida right-side/setter Kelly Murphy
(Wilmington, Ill.) became just the 29th player in program history to
join the school’s elusive 1,000-point club, recording her nation-leading
fifth triple-double of the season in the process Friday, to direct the
No. 1 Gators to a 3-0 (25-16, 25-17, 25-22) win against Auburn in the
Stephen C. O’Connell Center.
The Gators (15-1, 8-0 Southeastern Conference) claimed their 10th
consecutive victory and their fourth sweep in a row en route to the win.
Florida, which hit .250 for the match, held the Tigers to just .087
hitting, marking the third time this season that the Gators have limited
an opponent to less than a .100 hitting efficiency.
Murphy recorded a match-high 15 kills on .583 hitting to complement 13
assists and 12 digs for 16.0 total points. Murphy’s triple-double was
her fifth of the season, which allowed her to surpass Northern Iowa’s
Bre Payton for the top spot among national leaders in triple-doubles in
2010. It marked her school-record 20th career triple-double.
“You can’t talk about this match without talking about Kelly Murphy
because of how really special she was today,” Florida head coach Mary
Wise said. “She showed great offensive patience and used all parts of
the court to get her kills. She's got terrific court vision.”
Murphy recorded her 1,000th career point in the match, teaming with
junior middle blocker Cassandra Anderson (Bakersfield, Calif.) for a
block to give the Gators an 11-6 lead in the second set and to make her
just the 29th player in school history to eclipse the 1,000-point
plateau. She accomplished the feat in just 78 career matches, more
impressively while operating as a key element in Florida’s 6-2 offensive
Wise picked up her 699th career victory, putting her one win away from
700 for her coaching career. Wise is 699-131 (.842) in her 25th season
as a collegiate head coach.
“What we do know is that it's a 3-0 win at home, but we have to go back
to Auburn and that team, they do a lot of really good things,” Wise
said. “I have a feeling that this is a team that you don't want to play
in the second half of the SEC season, and I fully expect them to be in
the NCAA Tournament.”
The Gators improve to 13-1 all-time when playing as the nation’s No.
Junior outside hitter Kristy Jaeckel (Littleton, Colo.) charted nine
kills and seven digs, while senior outside hitter Callie Rivers (Winter
Park, Fla.) registered six kills and 12 digs. Senior middle blocker
Lauren Bledsoe (Long Beach, Calif.) added five kills and two blocks.
Freshman setter Chanel Brown (Tempe, Ariz.) dished out a match-high 22 assists, while senior libero Erin Fleming (Orlando, Fla.) posted a
match-high 13 digs.
To open the first set, the Gators jumped out to a fast 2-0 lead behind a
block by Bledsoe and sophomore right-side Tangerine Wiggs (Seattle,
Wash.) and a Bledsoe kill. The Tigers battled back to within one at 3-2,
but a block from Murphy and Anderson stretched the Gators’ lead back to three at 5-2. The two teams traded points until, at 7-4, a Fleming ace
widened the Florida lead to four at 8-4. From there, the Gators kept
rolling. Ahead 14-10, Florida ran off four consecutive points
highlighted by a pair of Anderson kills, to bring the score to 18-10.
The Tigers responded with a 3-0 run of their own behind kills from Sarah
Bullock and Kelly Fidero. The Gators then capitalized on several Auburn
errors and a Murphy kill to extend the lead to eight at 21-13, and
Florida easily closed out the first set at 25-16 on three consecutive
The two teams battled evenly to open the seca pair of Murphy kills and a Tiger error gave the Gators a three-point lead at 7-4. The Tigers fought back within one at 7-6 behind a Bullock and Alyssa Davis block. Florida then responded by firing off four consecutive points, highlighted by a Rivers ace and a block from Anderson and Murphy, to bring the score to 11-6. Auburn fought back, running off three consecutive points of their own behind kills from Bullock and Fidero to cut the Florida lead to two at 11-9, but they couldn’t overtake the Florida lead. Ahead 15-12, a Bledsoe kill and block from Anderson and Rivers to widen the gap to five at 17-12. The two teams traded points until the Gators were able to close out the second set at 25-17 on a Wiggs kill.
In the third set, the Tigers raced to a quick 3-1 lead thanks to a Johns
kill and a block from Camila Jeronsky and Fidero, but Gators fought back
to knot the score at 4-4 on a Jaeckel kill. With the score tied at five,
Florida ran off three consecutive points behind a pair of Murphy kills
and a Fleming ace to take the Gators’ first lead of the set at 8-5.
Ahead 8-6, the Gators went on another 3-0 run, highlighted by two
Jaeckel kills and another from Rivers, to widen the advantage to five at
11-6. Down by five, the Tigers battled back, capitalizing on three
Florida errors in a row to cut the Gators’ lead to two at 12-10.
Florida ran off three consecutive points at 14-12 thanks to kills from
Wiggs and Murphy and a Brown service ace, stretching the lead again to
five at 17-12. The Tigers kept battling, using kills from Bullock and
Jonelle Wallace, along with a block from Wallace and Lauren Mellor, to
come within two at 17-15. The two teams battled evenly in the final
points of the third set until the Gators pulled away on kills from
Murphy and Jaeckel and an Auburn error to bring the score to 24-19, but
the Tigers weren’t finished yet. Auburn fired off three straight points
on the Gators’ match point to come within two at 24-22. After a Florida
timeout, the Gators were able to close out the final set and the match
at 25-22 on a Bledsoe kill.
Auburn (14-7, 5-4 SEC) was led by Fidero’s team-high eight kills and
Chelsea Wintzinger’s team-high 11 digs.
Florida returns to action on Sunday when it plays host to border-rival
Georgia. Opening serve in the Stephen C. O’Connell Center is slated for
1:30 p.m. ET.