University of Georgia Athletics

ATHENS, Ga. – The University of Georgia women’s volleyball team recorded a Trojan sweep Friday night at Stegeman Coliseum to open the 2022 season (25-19, 25-18, 25-17).

Newcomer Sophie Fisher shone in his Bulldog debut, making 11 blocks, setting a new Georgia rally goal record, previously nine set in 2015. Fischer also had eight kills with a pair of digs.

Offensively, senior Kacie Evans tallied 11 kills reaching .350 in the game. Defensively, Evans added seven digs to his line. Second year libero Bailey Cox led the defense with 11 digs.

Other notable performances include the first year Tori Harper complete seven blocks with three kills in his Georgia debut and sophomore Abby Maesch with seven kills and three blocks.

In all, Georgia had 15 blocks in the three-set game, the most since 13 against Kennesaw State in 2016. On the offensive end of the ball, the Bulldogs hit .304 as a team.

Georgia trailed to open the game in the first set, down one in the first media break, 15-14. A 7-0 run put the Bulldogs ahead 20-16. Troy closed it at two at 20-18 and Georgia took a timeout. A Bulldog block and an ace from Maesch put Georgia ahead by four and Troy used his last timeout. The Bulldogs held on to end the set on an 11-3 run to take the first stanza 25-19. Fischer led the Bulldogs with five kills to start the game.

A 5-1 run opened up a 10-6 lead for UGA in the second set, capped by Evans’ fifth kill, forcing an early timeout for Troy. Up 11-9, a 6-1 Georgia run extended their lead in the frame to 16-10, exhausting the Trojans’ timeouts in the second. Georgia held on and earned a 25-18 victory in straight sets, taking a 2-0 lead over the Trojans. Evans had four kills on five swings in the second set as Fischer had six blocks.

Georgia took an 8-4 lead in the third and continued to build the advantage until 14-7. With the Bulldogs ahead, Troy slowed Georgia’s offense, cutting the lead to 17-15. Georgia bounced back to wrap up the set on an 8-2, 25-17 run, closing the book on the three-set victory.

The Bulldogs will face Chattanooga and Santa Clara on Saturday at Stegeman Coliseum. The first serve against the Mocs is set for 11 a.m. The Classic City Clash will conclude when Georgia takes on the Santa Clara Broncs at 7:30 p.m.

Women’s Volleyball Head Coach Tom Black
On the performance of the team…

“I think it was a good first day. Lots of positives, and I was proud to see where we can improve as it’s the first game of the season. With Abby Maesh coming in, we hit a curveball with Amber (Stivrins) It’s never something you want to see happen before a first game but Abby did a great job She had a lot of plays and the team got together really mobilized. It was great to see.

On by Sophie Fisher performance…

“It was exciting. Not just because of how many blocks she got, but how much she’s going to improve over the course of the season. She was really dominant up there, and it was really good to seeing her in the Red and Black for the first time.”

On what fans can expect to see from the team this season…

“I think we play fast. It’s an exciting style of play. Our offense will be much smoother. I think we’re really tough behind the service line. Obviously we blocked a ton of balls. If we do that, we are hard to score against.”

Junior Medium Blocker Sophie Fisher
In his first match as a Bulldog…

“It was good. We still have a lot of things to work on, but I think we came together as a team and accomplished some things that we worked on last week, so that was good.”

On his record blocking performance tonight…

“I work a lot with Coach Tom [Black] and my other pin blockers I’m just trying to get better with the pin blocker, middle blocker and my other position on the outside are two different sized blockers so to work with them and get advice from the coach Tom and his knowledge were great.

On his expectations for this season…

“We have high expectations as a team, and obviously those don’t happen overnight. So just keep coming and training every day, work hard, learn from every game and just keep working. “

About Terry Simmons

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