The USF volleyball team powered its way to a perfect opening day on Friday at The Corral, defeating San Jose State and Jacksonville to begin the season.
Powered by 10 kills from redshirt senior middle blocker Clara Payne, the Bulls knocked off San Jose State in four sets (25-19, 17-25, 25-17, 25-14) in the first match. The Spartans, coached by former USF standout Jolene Shepardson, rallied to take the second set before the Bulls stormed back in the third and dominated in the fourth and final set.
In the nightcap, the Bulls needed five sets (25-18, 22-25, 23-25, 25-21, 15-11) to knock off Jacksonville. Junior outside hitter Jac’cara Walker led all Bulls with 16 kills against the Dolphins and finished with 22 total.
Senior Briana Stowell tallied 58 assists in the two matches combined and notched her first double-double of the season in the second contest against the Dolphins, with 30 assists and 13 digs.
Entering her seventh season as head coach, Courtney Draper told GoUSFBulls.com, “It’s very exciting to open with two wins, but neither match was easy. We’re playing a couple NCAA tournament teams from last season here this weekend, so to get off to a good start was great to see.”
USF will finish off the invitational with defending America East Champion, Stony Brook at the Corral on Saturday at 1 p.m.