Liberty swept the defending ASUN champion FGCU Eagles (25-22, 25-23, 25-22) on Tuesday at the Vines Center to open conference play.
The Lady Flames (8-5), in their second year in the ASUN, have won their conference opener each of the last two years. Liberty extended its overall winning streak to three contests and its home winning streak to 10 matches. Meanwhile, FGCU falls to 10-3, 0-1 in ASUN play.
Notable Numbers • Liberty hit .174 for the match and held FGCU to .048. The Eagles entered the match with the best hitting percentage in the conference at .259. Liberty also led in blocks (12.5-6) and digs (58-55).
• Liberty's Amelia Johnson scored a match-high 15 kills and added 11 digs for her fifth career double-double (all this year). Anna Gragg scored eight kills, while Kailey Macy posted a match-high and season-high eight blocks. Hannah Morris dished out 20 assists and also contributed nine digs and five blocks, while Macy Phillips collected 17 digs.
• Cortney VanLiew led FGCU with 12 kills, while Dana Axner collected a match-high 24 digs and Chelsey Lockey dished out a match-high 27 assists.
Head Coach Trevor Johnson "Great win not only for our program but for all our fans, and Flames Nation! So proud of our girls for trusting the process and surrendering the outcomes daily. They have been getting better every day. This is a special group to coach!"
Match Summary SET 1 • Liberty broke a 20-20 tie with a four-point run that included two Johnson kills and an ace from the redshirt junior. After a pair of FGCU points, Liberty's Gragg scored the winning kill.
• The Lady Flames outhit the Eagles .214-.047 during set one. Macy contributed to all of Liberty's five set-one blocks, while Johnson sent down five kills during the opening session.
SET 2 • FGCU appeared to be on its way to tying the match, leading the second set 20-17. Liberty fought back to tie it at 20-20, 22-22 and 23-23. A Gragg/Casey Goodwin block clinched the 25-23 win.
• The hosts held the Eagles to a -.022 hitting percentage during the middle frame.
SET 3 • The Eagles led set three 22-21 before the Lady Flames scored the final four points to seal the 3-0 sweep.
• Johnson scored five kills in all three sets.
Quick Hits • Liberty is the first ASUN team to sweep FGCU since Kennesaw State did so in the 2017 ASUN Championship title match.
• FGCU won all three meetings between the teams last year, and now holds a 3-1 record all-time against the Lady Flames in volleyball.
• Liberty's 10-match home winning streak is its longest since winning 15 straight home matches from Oct. 14, 2011 through Sept. 3, 2013.
• Liberty is 4-0 at home this season, losing just one set at the Vines Center so far. The Lady Flames hold an 11-3 home record under second-year Head Coach Trevor Johnson.
• The Lady Flames are 7-3 this season in sets decided by just two points.
Up Next Liberty wraps up its three-match ASUN-opening homestand with two matches this weekend. The Lady Flames host Jacksonville on Saturday at 1 p.m. before welcoming North Florida to the Vines Center for a 1 p.m. match on Sunday.
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