Sports, Volleyball

Miami volleyball sweeps Virginia Tech 3-0

The Miami Hurricanes volleyball team swept ACC foe Virginia Tech on Sunday afternoon.

The Canes (8-12, 2-6 ACC) won in three straight sets 25-20, 25-19 and 25-19. The victory over the Hokies (8-11, 3-5 ACC) snapped a four-match skid for the Canes.

“I liked their composure,” Miami Head Coach José “Keno” Gándara said of his team’s performance. “I thought they played about the same from start to finish. We gave up some easy points in game one and we made some good adjustments. We have not done that well [this season], but I liked the way we played [today].”

Both teams went back and forth in the first set, but the Hurricanes edged out the Hokies thanks to dominating plays at the net. The Canes tallied 14 kills compared to the Hokies’ eight, along with a three to zero margin in blocks.

Miami took the momentum from its first set victory and controlled play to win the second set as well. Junior outside hitter Olga Strantzali led with 12 kills for the Hurricanes, while sophomore middle blocker Lucia Pampana added three kills and five blocks to give the team a 2-0 advantage heading into the intermission.

Miami came out of the break firing, led by sophomore outside hitter Anna Haak. Haak chipped in five kills in the final set. The Canes also combined for six blocks, completing the sweep of the Hokies.

“I feel like we’re working on the same stuff in practice every day,” Strantzali said following the team’s victory. “Game after game we show up a lot better than the last game. We played a lot better today than the last game against Pittsburgh.”

Miami posted a .315 hitting percentage while holding the Virginia Tech attack to a hitting percentage of .086. The Canes also totaled 14 blocks, the second best mark in program history in a three-set match.

Strantzali finished with 16 kills and hit .286, while also adding nine digs, five blocks and a team-high two service aces for Miami.

“Olga’s been great all year,” Gándara said. “We need to get some help from other kids. It was definitely nice to get Kolby [Bird], Lucia [Pampana] and Anna [Haak] going a little bit.”

Sophomore outside hitter Kolby Bird totaled a .375 hitting percentage, four kills and a dig while Haak added 10 kills, eight digs, two blocks and two assists. Pampana had a team-best eight blocks in addition to five kills.

Freshman setter Hannah Sorensen controlled the game for the Canes, dishing out 36 assists and adding two blocks and two digs.

Miami now sets its sights on arch-rival No. 15 Florida State at 7 p.m. on Wednesday at the Knight Sports Complex.

October 16, 2016

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