No. 12 Sandy Owls’ Season Ends at Elite 8

GULF SHORES, Ala. – The No. 12 ranked (8) Florida Atlantic University beach volleyball team’s (23-12) historic season has come to a close after two losses on Friday of the NCAA Beach Volleyball Championship. The Owls fell to (1) No. 1 USC in the morning, 3-0, and after lengthy weather delay, dropped its match versus (4) No. 5 Loyola Marymount in the elimination bracket, 3-0. FAU finishes the season with a program record 23 wins and coming off its first NCAA Tournament win and appearances.
Vs. (1) No. 1 USC
All courts held tough with USC in the first sets, but the Women of Troy began to pull away late on courts two through five to win the set on each. Court one’s Erica Brok/Mackenzie Morris earned a huge set one win, 21-18. Court three’s match finished up first after Ellie Austin/Julie Honzovicova fell into a hole in set two to drop their court, 19-21, 8-21. Mica Allison/Abby Jackson finished shortly thereafter on court five, 16-21, 12-21. USC clinched its match on court two following a 19-21, 16-21 loss for FAU.

In Brok/Morris’ match, the duo tallied 12 kills apiece, while Morris added in three blocks. Courtney Moon logged 18 kills and 10 digs on court two. Jillienne Cangelosi’s defense continued to be strong with 16 digs in her court four match.

1. Erica Brok/Mackenzie Morris (FAU) vs. Tina Graudina/Hailey Harward (USC) 21-18, 21-23 (unfinished)
2. Megan Kraft/Sammy Slater (USC) def. Courtney Moon/Marketa Svozilova (FAU) 21-19, 21-16 (finished third)
3. Julia Scoles/Delaynie Maple (USC) def. Ellie Austin/Julie Honzovicova (FAU) 19-21, 8-21 (finished first)
4. Nicole Nourse/Audrey Nourse (USC) vs. Jillienne Candelosi/Christine Jarman (FAU) 21-19, 18-12 (unfinished)
5. Molly Ebertin/Sunny Villapando (USC) def. Mica Allison/Abby Jackson (FAU) 21-16, 21-12 (finished second)

Vs. (4) No. 5 LMU
The Owls’ match versus LMU was similar to the morning’s contest, as the Owls fell on courts two through five in the first set, but Brok/Morris won 21-16 in the first set. FAU fought hard late in the second sets, with Austin/Honzovicova forcing a third set on court three. However, courts two, four and five finished, all in favor of LMU.

1. Megan Rice/Reka Orsi Toth (LMU) vs. Erica Brok/Mackenzie Morris 16-21, 21-15, 7-3 (unfinished)
2. Avery Poppinga/Marine Kinna (LMU) def. Courtney Moon/Marketa Svozilova (FAU) 21-18, 21-19 (finished third)
3. Valma Prihiti/Macy Gordon (LMU) vs. Ellie Austin/Julie Honzovicova (FAU) 21-19, 19-21 (unfinished)
4. Selina Marolf/Abbey Thorup (LMU) def. Jillienne Cangelosi/Christine Jarman (FAU) 21-12, 21-20 (finished third)
5. Jacinda Ramirez/Isabelle Reffel (LMU) def. Mica Allison/Abby Jackson (FAU) 21-19, 22-20 (finished second)
The Sandy Owls will return several important pieces for the 2023 season. After five amazing seasons, court one’s Brok/Morris will leave FAU having earned a 95-30 record as a pair.
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