Nov. 6, 2005
Auburn, Ala. -
In Auburn's final home match of the season, the Tigers ended on a high by taking a game from No. 6 Florida for the first time since the 1999 season when AU won game two. The Tigers (8-14, 2-12 SEC) won game three but the Gators (23-2, 13-1 SEC) came out the match winner, 30-16, 30-19, 24-30, 30-16.
"I thought our players played very hard throughout the entire match," Auburn head coach Laura Farina said. "I was really impressed with how Alison Jacobs started out slow and bounced out of it and Joanna Pappas was tremendous this afternoon. She was determined to just battle."
Sophomore Rachel Shanks recorded her fifth double-double of the season with 10 kills and 13 digs and contributed three service aces en route to Auburn tying its season high in aces with a team total eight. In her final match in Auburn, senior Jennifer Amobi led her squad in with 11 kills and tied her career-high with three service aces.
With 13 digs against the Gators, senior Bailey Veit inched closer to that 1,000-career dig mark and needs just 19 more to become the sixth player ever at Auburn to reach this plateau. Veit and Shanks combined to lead the AU defense. Julie Bosler and Dalia Naidzinaviciute each had four blocks on the afternoon as Bosler needs just one more solo block to move into the top-five all-time for the category (she had two on Sunday).
"What this team has done well all season is work very hard in every practice," Farina noted. "Our players are getting better every day and our freshmen have made great strides all season. In our last two matches of the regular season we just have to go out there and play. Both South Carolina and Tennessee are beatable. Right now we are looking to end this season on the highest note possible. The season hasn't gone the way we thought or the way we predicted it would, but we have a young team out there that shows a lot of courage in tough situations. Courage is not something that can be taught."
The Tigers conclude the regular season next weekend with road trips to South Carolina, Nov. 10, and Tennessee, Nov. 12. The SEC Championship begins Nov. 17 and will be held in Tuscaloosa, Ala.