Wilson records 1,000th kill, No. 8 Florida sweeps Mizzou volleyball

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By Ben Burke, 23 Sports

Friday, Oct. 24-

Even though the Missouri volleyball team lost 3-0 to the SEC leading Florida Gators (25-17, 25-19, 25-13), Friday night’s contest was not a total loss.

On the positive side, senior Emily Wilson became the 14th player in program history to join the 1,000-kill club. This milestone came on one of her seven kills on the night.

Wilson, the younger sister of former Mizzou middle blocker Catie Wilson, has had an illustrious career as a Tiger; she was named to the All-Big 12 Freshman Team and was the first Missouri freshman to post 300 kills since 2006. She had 766 entering this year.

Florida showed their dominance early, as they quickly jumped out to a 5-0 lead in the first set, prompting a Mizzou timeout.

The Tigers were able to make a partial comeback following the timeout, winning three of the next four points, but that’s as close as they came.

A 7-2 Florida run in the middle of the set put things out of reach, as it gave them a commanding 17-9 lead. They rode that run to a 25-17 set win.

Five of those seven points were scored on kills from Florida middle blocker Rhamat Alhassan.

The freshman, who played on the USA Volleyball Women’s Junior National Team this past summer, lead the team with 14 kills on the night and hit an impressive .591. She also leads the SEC in hitting percentage.

Mizzou started the second set on a better note, as they were able to take a brief 1-0 lead before Florida took it right back. This was one of only three leads the Tigers held on the night, none of them lasting for more than one point.

The second set stayed a lot closer than the first, with Missouri and Florida trading runs until the score was 19-18 in favor of the Gators.

The Tigers needed to dig deep to pull out the set victory, but cracked under the pressure. Their three attack errors highlighted a 6-1 Florida run to finish off the set 25-19.

Missouri’s inability to perform in late-set situations haunted them the whole night, as the Gators won each of their set points as a result of either a service or attack error by Mizzou. They also outscored the Tigers 15-4 after scoring their 20th point of each set.

It appeared that the Gators were becoming simply too much for the Tigers to handle early in the third set, as they took six of the first seven points, and never looked back from there.

Missouri got solid production in the match from their two Hawaiians, outside hitter Carly Kan and setter Loxley Keala.

Kan (No. 1 in the SEC in double-doubles) was a kill away from her 15th of the season, tallying nine kills and 12 digs. Keala (No. 2 in the SEC in double-doubles) picked up her 11th, with 13 assists and 11 digs.

After the loss, Mizzou’s record drops to 13-10 (4-4 in SEC play). They continue their road trip Sunday when they take on the South Carolina Gamecocks.