The statistics may have favored the Bulls Sunday, but the scoreboard still read Alabama 3, USF 1.
The USF volleyball team hit for a higher percentage, committed fewer errors and had more blocks. However, that wasn’t enough to stop the Crimson Tide (15-5, 6-3 in the Southeastern Conference) from taking a 30-24, 27-30, 30-24, 30-25 victory.
The Alabama match forced the Bulls (12-7, 6-3 in Conference USA) to make a quick recovery after dispatching UAB 30-20, 30-23, 30-21 Saturday night. Originally scheduled for a 1 p.m. starting time, the Bulls match vs. the Crimson Tide was moved up when the airline canceled USF’s return flight after the Sept. 11 attacks. The move was made to accommodate an earlier return flight for the Bulls.
Michelle Collier continued to carry the Bulls’ attack as she registered 24 kills against the Crimson Tide. In USF’s Game 2 victory, Collier had nearly half of the Bulls’ offense, garnering eight of the team’s 17 kills. Collier had a team-high 13 kills vs. UAB Saturday, along with a potent .346 attack percentage.
The Tide came out of the blocks quickly, posting a .500 attack percentage en route to a 30-24 game victory in Game 1. The young ‘Bama squad received strong support from freshmen Julie Farley and Erin Heffner and sophomore outside hitter Jennifer Bibber. Bibber’s 20 kills were a team high, and both Farley and Heffner tallied double-digit kills for the Crimson Tide. Heffner led her team’s defense effort with 16 digs.