THE FLATS — No. 13 Georgia Tech volleyball closed out its regular season with a sweep (25-19, 25-14, 25-22) of Florida State on Saturday in O’Keefe Gymnasium, putting an exclamation point on its third 20+ win season in four years. The Yellow Jackets (20-7, 13-5 ACC) avoided dropping a set and outscored the Seminoles (19-10, 11-7 ACC) by double digits in the second set on the way to their 13th conference win, tying the fourth highest mark all-time.
The White and Gold were as dominant on paper as in the flow of the match, holding hefty advantages across the board in kills (46-27), hitting percentage (.301-.101), assists (43-26), digs (52-37) and blocks (11-4). The well-rounded performance led to Tech’s 14th sweep of the season and ninth in ACC play, tying last season’s tally.
With the win, coach Michelle Collier tied for Jacket skipper Bond Shymansky for second in program history in career wins on The Flats with each owning 172 to date.
A number of Jackets joined Collier in making their own history as senior outside hitter Julia Bergmann headlined the bunch, using her 15 kills in the match to tie Monique Mead for ninth all-time in single-season kills with 515 and counting. For her career, Bergmann also jumped into sixth in program history in total kills, surpassing 1,706 (Lauren Sauer – 2001-04) as she’s up to 1,708 during her time on The Flats.
On top of Bergmann’s record marks, middle blockers Breland Morrissette and Erin Moss both reached the century mark in blocks this season as Morrissette is up to 102 while Moss owns 101.
Moss was the engine behind the sweep for the Yellow Jackets, tying her career high of 14 kills at a blistering .524 clip while anchoring the defense with six blocks (one solo, five assisted). Bergmann put in her usual production, finishing with 10 digs along with her aforementioned 15 kills and a pair of blocks to secure her 12th double double on the season.
Falling in line with Bergmann and Moss was Morrissette with five kills on a .625 hitting percentage and five blocks. Junior setter Bella D’Amico set up the attack, totaling 37 assists, and senior libero Paola Pimentel led the squad with 15 digs.
How it Happened
Starting to fall behind in the early goings of the first set, Georgia Tech bounced back with a five-point run to climb in front up to a 9-6 lead. The Yellow Jackets never surrendered that lead, going on to take eight more points in 10 chances for an 18-11 advantage that would prove to be insurmountable. Florida State still battled back to draw within three, trailing 22-19, but Tech would close out the set comfortably for a 25-19 set one win as Moss slammed the door with a kill.
The second set was initially back and forth as neither side managed to separate by more than two points up to a 12-11 Yellow Jacket lead. The White and Gold exploded from that point forward, going on a 13-3 run to close out the second set as sophomore outside hitter Bianca Bertolino put a bow on the double-digit victory, 25-14.
The most evenly matched set of the day proved to be the third set as no squad could distance itself by any more than three throughout the set’s entirety. Georgia Tech made the first significant run of five consecutive points to take a 14-11 lead, but the Noles came right back with a four-point stretch to slip back ahead by one, 16-15. Both teams continued to battle until the Jackets rattled off three crucial points for a 21-19 stronghold. Florida State failed to even the match from that moment on as Bergmann stepped up to close out the sweep, driving home back-to-back kills to secure a 25-22 triumph in set three and match sweep.
Georgia Tech awaits potential selection to the NCAA tournament. The 2022 DI Women’s Volleyball Championship Selection Show will air on Sunday at 7:30 p.m. on ESPNU. The Yellow Jackets will host a watch party for the selection show beginning at 7 p.m. in O’Keefe Gymnasium.
Competitive Drive Initiative
In a unified endeavor, Georgia Tech, the Georgia Tech Foundation, Georgia Tech athletics and the Alexander-Tharpe Fund have come together to accelerate funding for student-athlete scholarships with the launch of the Competitive Drive Initiative. The initiative kicks off with the Accelerate GT Match Program, where any new gift to the A-T Fund’s Athletic Scholarship Fund made through Dec. 31 will be matched dollar-for-dollar by the Georgia Tech Foundation, up to $2.5 million. Should Accelerate GT reach its $2.5 million fundraising goal, the matching gift would result in a $5 million impact for Georgia Tech athletics. To learn more and to contribute online, visit atfund.org/accelerate.