FT. LAUDERDALE, Fla. – The Saint Leo volleyball team closed out its 2012 schedule was an amazing come-from-behind victory as the Lions defeated Nova Southeastern 3-2 (24-26, 11-25, 25-21, 25-17, 15-10) in Sunshine State Conference action on Friday night from south Florida.
The Lions (12-16, 4-12 SSC) scored the first nine points in the opening frame before NSU rallied to come within two at 15-13. Again, Saint Leo went on a run, getting five straight to push back out to 20-13, but again the Sharks came back. They got within one on three occasions: 21-20, 22-21 and 23-22, and didn't actually take the lead until 25-24 but an untimely attack error gave NSU the set win.
Set two wouldn't have nearly as much drama. The Sharks (4-27, 1-14 SSC) went out ahead 3-0, 8-2, 12-3 and 18-4. The closest deficit Saint Leo had after that was 13 points, and NSU won the set by 14, 25-11.
Following the break sets three and four were extremely close. The largest lead in the third was six, at 13-7, and NSU immediately cut it to one with five straight points. From then on, the deficit was no bigger than five, and a Saint Leo kill ended it at 25-21.
The fourth, from the first point until 11-10, was never separated by more than two points. The Lions went on a 7-1 run to extend out to an 18-11 lead, and never looked back, forcing the deciding set at 25-17.
Much like the previous set, the fifth began back and forth. At 7-5, neither team had led by more than two points. At that point, Saint Leo went on a 7-3 run to have set and match point at 14-8. Though the Sharks scored twice to make it 14-10, a Tawni Warren kill ended the night at 15-10.
In the victory, the Lions were led by Warren, who's 22 kills set a new career mark for the junior from Colorado. Also in double figures was Tayler Hegg, who finished a promising freshman campaign with 10 kills and just two errors in her final game.
For NSU, Sydney Cook led the Sharks with 17 kills and Rachel Woodson added 12.
To keep up with the Lions over the winter and spring months, be sure to check in with SaintLeoLions.com as Head Coach Sam Cibrone builds his 2013 team.
This postgame recap is brought to you by Papa Joe's Italian Restaurant in Brooksville, Fla.
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