Tampa, Fla. (November 15, 2007) – The Saint Leo University volleyball team (24-14) was edged 3-2 by No. 14 Florida Southern College (25-8) in the Quarterfinals of the NCAA Division II South Region Tournament on Thursday, ending the Lions season. Southern erased a 2-1 deficit to win the match with game scores of 25-30, 30-18, 19-30, 30-25, 15-4.
Saint Leo was led by 2007 SSC Freshman of the Year Kaitlin McKenna (Farmington Hills, Mich.) who had 14 kills and hit .480. Audrey Starkebaum (Jr., Haxtun, Colo.) added 13 kills for the Lions, while Jenna Jordan (So., Plant City, Fla.) rounded out a trio with double-digit kills as she finished with 11. Sophomore setter Michelle Nogueras (Cayey, Puerto Rico) was just one kill shy of her seventh triple-double of the year with nine kills, 48 assists and 18 digs.
The Lions got off to a fast start by scoring five of the first six points en route to a 30-25 game one victory. Saint Leo scored nine of the final 13 points in the opening contest to win its first-ever game in NCAA Tournament play.
After Southern tied the match with a 30-18 win in game two, the Lions jumped back in front with a convincing win of their own in game three. Saint Leo had two big runs that keyed the 30-19 game three win.
The Lions appeared to be headed for the upset win, as they led 23-18 in game four. However, Southern went on a 12-2 run to close out the game and force the decisive fifth contest. The Mocs led from the start in game five, and closed out the match by scoring the final 10 points to advance to a Regional Semifinal meeting with No. 3 seed Nova Southeastern University.
Florida Southern’s Beverly Stasis led all players with 30 kills in the match, while Ashley Martin had 18 and Danielle Durham added 14.