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NOTEBOOK: Track and field team finds success at USF Bulls Invitational

Next up for USF track and field is the FSU Relays from March 26-27 in Tallahassee. USF ATHLETICS PHOTO

The USF track and field team had several winners and top finishers at the USF Bulls Invitational on Friday and Saturday, including senior Javonia Ellis, who placed second in the long jump with a distance of 18-8.50.

In addition to Ellis, junior Johanna Jeremiah placed fourth in the shot put, freshman Kobe Babin was second in the pole vault with a height of 16-2.75 and junior Hannah Offenback earned the individual title in the 5,000 meters with a time of 17 minutes, 48.82 seconds on the first day of competition.

On Saturday, three Bulls took home individual titles. Junior Jae’Nisa Heckstall won the 100-meter hurdles, freshman Jasmine Knowles won the 400 meters with a time of 55.20 and sophomore Alexandra Weir took first in the 1,500 meters with a time of 4:46.64.

“Several athletes achieved personal bests this weekend,” coach Erik Jenkins said. “Better performances will come, but we have to continue improving meet management and skill execution.”

Volleyball splits two-match series against Tulane

The women’s volleyball team swept Tulane in three sets Friday, but fell 3-1 to the Green Wave the following day in the Corral. 

The Bulls tied a season-best 10 service aces in the victory as they won the three-set match 25-21, 25-19 and 25-22. 

The Bulls were not as triumphant Saturday. They dropped the first two sets of the match before securing the third. That was all they could muster though as the Green Wave rallied and claimed set four as well as the victory. 

On both days, the Bulls were led by Marta Cvitkovic, Makayla Washington and Agata Plaga. Cvitkovic had 22 kills, 10 digs, four blocks and two service aces over both days.

Washington posted 13 kills and a .346 hitting percentage Friday and 11 kills Saturday. Plaga had six kills and three service aces Friday, and 11 kills and three service aces Saturday. 

Men’s soccer winning streak snapped by No. 17 SMU

USF’s four-match winning streak was snapped by No. 17 SMU on Saturday as it lost 3-2 to the Mustangs in Dallas.

The Bulls came out of the gate hot as they scored back-to-back goals just minutes apart to give them a 2-1 lead going into the break.

However, Skage Simonsen of SMU quickly responded in the second half with two consecutive goals in the 46th and 47th minute.

The loss cost USF the chance of equaling the program’s longest winning streak of all time, which was five, accomplished in the 2011 season.

No. 29 men’s tennis falls short to No. 50 Miami 

The men’s tennis team fell to Miami 3-4 on Saturday after failing to win the doubles point as well as four singles courts that were necessary to secure the win. 

Rithvic Bollipalli and Jakub Wojcik suffered a loss to Miami’s Franco Aubone and Benjamin Hannestad 3-6. Chase Ferguson and Pierre Luquet also fell short to Miami’s Adria Soriano Barrera and Oren Vasser, 3-6. 

During singles play, Wojcik scored against Bojan Jankulovski twice giving the Bulls two points. USF’s final point was secured by Sergio Gomez-Montesa’s 7-6, 4-6, 1 (10-5) contest against Aubone. 

However, it wasn’t enough to beat Miami. The Canes already had the match on courts one, four and six. 

“Credit to Miami for playing in a hungry desperate fashion that, coupled with their skill, was too good for us,” coach Ashley Fisher said. “I’m disappointed in myself for having a career as a professional doubles player and not doing a good job of coaching doubles.

“We will focus this week on doubles and committing to our identity as players, and the great [thing] about our schedule is there are always opportunities around the corner.”