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North Florida (8-6, 0-2 A-Sun)
Lipscomb (6-8, 3-0 A-Sun)
9/22/2012 | Nashville, TN | Attendance: 211
Saturday, September 22, 2012
NASHVILLE, Tenn.-There was no fiery speech. No threats of retribution. No lightning and thunder.
Coach Brandon Rosenthal stresses there was nothing special about what happened during the intermission between set two and set three. But something sparked his Lipscomb Lady Bisons Saturday afternoon in one of the wildest momentum changes seen on the floor of Allen Arena. After spotting visiting North Florida a 2-0 edge, the Lady Bisons fought back to win the next three sets and the match in Atlantic Sun competition.
Rosenthal suggested it was as simple as starting to execute the game plan.
“It was the recognition that we have the ability and capability of imposing our will instead of vice versa,” Rosenthal said. “In set three we came out with a passion and an idea of what we wanted to do, and we weren’t about to back down.
“We made some pretty small tactical changes between sets two and three. We were doing some good things. We were playing pretty good, but we had to make plays. Before the match we talked about playing with all we had, and obviously we hadn’t done that in the first two sets.”
Powered by a career-high 22 kills from outside hitter Lauren Ford, and a season-high 21 by outside hitter Kaycee Green as the Lady Bisons stunned North Florida. The Lady Bisons won set three 25-10, set four 25-18 and sealed the match with a 15-10 win in set five. North Florida had been the victor in set one 25-23 followed by a 25-22 win in the second set.
“We have seen a nice progression over the last couple of weeks from both Lauren Ford and Kaycee Green,” Rosenthal said. “That has been huge. When you put that much pressure on the outside it opens up a huge hole for Jewell Dobson and the other middles.”
The Lady Bisons, with their third victory in a row, raised their record to 6-8, 3-0 in the A-Sun. North Florida dropped to 8-6, 0-2 in the conference.
“You have to credit North Florida in the first two sets for putting us in an uncomfortable position,” Rosenthal said. “They really took advantage of us.”
Middle blocker Jewell Dobson also set a career-high with 18 kills to go with a team-high .469 hitting percentage.
Setter Caitlin “Dot” Dotson posted 61 assists, also a career-high.
“I thought Dot did a great job, especially in sets three, four and five of getting the ball and understanding the hot hitters,” Rosenthal said. “That’s what it takes.”
Defensively, libero Stephanie Rex led the Lady Bisons with 20 digs. Also in double figures in digs were Dotson with 17, a season-high, followed by Ford with 13 and outside hitter Sophie Kellerman with a career-high 12.
“Defensively, it was spotty at times,” Rosenthal said. “We had pretty consistent play out of Sophie Kellerman. I also thought she served extremely well.”
Freshman opposite Brittnay Estes posted a career-high six kills.
“There is no doubt that it was a team effort,” Rosenthal said. “It is hard to be upset with the hitting percentage, the kills and the digs. I thought in the first two sets we were beating them in every category except sets won.
“When you look at the whole body of work I thought we did a nice job. There were two different matches - sets one and two and sets three, four and five.”
North Florida placed three players in double figures in kills - Paige Pridgeon with 15, Anna Budinska with 12 and Carolyn Jenkins with 11.
Nicole Baran was credited with a match-high 22 digs followed by Pridgeon with 17 and Budinska with 11.
The Lady Bisons hit the road to Georgia for a pair of A-Sun matches facing Kennesaw State at 4 p.m. Friday and Mercer at 1 p.m. Saturday.
Written by Mark McGee, Senior Publisher/Director of Media Relations for Athletics.