Tallahassee, Fla. – Coming off a disappointing loss against Duke on Friday, Florida State showed no mercy against Wake Forest as it took down the Demon Deacons 3-2 on Lucy McDaniel Court in Tully Gym on Sunday, Sept. 30. The Seminoles are now 5-8 overall and 2-3 in the ACC, while Wake Forest drops to 6-8 and 3-2.
This was only the second five-game match this season for the Seminoles who dropped a 2-3 decision to Missouri State last month. Today’s match was the third to go to five in series history between these two teams. All three of those matches went to Florida State, who now leads the all-time series 18-6.
Leading the Seminoles were starters Makini Thompson (Quincy, Mass.), Mira Djuric (Belgrade, Serbia) and Brianna Barry (Winter Springs, Fla.) all with double-digit kills and points. Thompson recorded 16 kills for a .204 attack percentage and added 17.5 points to the board. Both Djuric and Barry managed 18 kills, a season-high for Barry who also led the team in attacking with a .371 percentage on 35 attempts and 19 points.
Also recording a season-high against Wake Forest was sophomore Nikki Baker (Findlay, Ohio) with 36 assists. The starter setter also topped her season in digs with 16.
Senior libero Summer Weissing (Boca Raton, Fla.) had 20 digs, also a high for her this season, which brings her career total to 1,555 and moves her to No. 2 in school history for career digs. Weissing now needs only 216 digs this season to replace current record-holder Luiza Ramos’ 1,771 dig total.
“Even though we lost to Duke on Friday we did some quality things,” head coach Todd Kress said. “We pushed Duke into the mid-twenties and then just didn’t make plays down the stretch.
“Today against Wake Forest was a different outcome. We made plays down the stretch in games two, three and five. We had plenty of opportunities to do it in game one but we didn’t do it. I thought we maybe lost a little bit of confidence.”
Although the Seminoles lost game one, they were able to score 28 points and keep the Deacons on their toes. Game two showcased a more focused Seminole team that was able to hold Wake Forest to 25 points while leading the game in attacking percentage with .212.
Florida State took control of its opportunities in game three, recording 18 kills and averaging a match-high .343 attacking percentage. But that didn’t stop Wake Forest from clawing its way back in game four to beat the garnet and gold 31-29.
With everything on the line for the Seminoles in game five, there was no room for errors. After the Deacons scored the first point off a kill from their leader, red-shirt junior Natalie Mullikin, Seminole junior Djuric responded with a powerful kill of her own.
Both teams went nearly point-for-point throughout the final game, but Florida State was able to hold Wake Forest to 11 after another kill by Djuric moves the Seminoles into the match-point position. A trademark serve by Djuric resulted in her fourth service ace of the day and won the match for FSU.
“I love the way we bounced back after a disappointing loss in game one,” Kress said. “That is what this team is all about right now, we are about confidence. We have to find our stride and continue to grow with confidence and once we do that we’ll get to where we want to be.”
The Seminoles will return to their home court on Friday, Oct. 5 to take on Georgia Tech at 7:00 p.m. The match will be broadcast live on Sun Sports and is also the “Dig For the Cure” night, benefiting the North Florida Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Affiliate. Be sure to come out and support Florida State volleyball as they look to improve their record and support a great cause.