The Florida State University indoor volleyball team defeated fourth-seeded Iowa State in Minneapolis Saturday evening to advance to the school’s first ever NCAA Final Four.
FSU defeated Iowa State 3-2 (25-21, 23-25, 25-20, 19-25, 15-11).
The Lady Noles trailed in set No. 5 by a 4-1 margin before head coach Chris Poole called a timeout to settle his team down.
“The girls just kept hanging in there, kept playing hard,” head coach Chris Poole told reporters. “I think the sets that we won, our block did pretty well. Our sets that we lost, our block didn’t do as well. So that was kind of the story of it, which we felt like coming up here that would make a difference if we could get our block going. You just have to give credit to our team first for the way they kept fighting, and certainly Iowa State didn’t back down and kept fighting to try to make us have to work even harder. I’m very proud of the girls for the work that they’ve put in over the past year to get to this point.”
FSU went on to win the fifth set 15-11, after trailing.
Junior middle blocker Sareea Freeman, from Fresno, Calif., was named to the all-tournament team, as she dominated defensively with three blocks, including her final one that gave FSU a 12-10 advantage. She also recorded a double-double with 12 kills, a .500 hitting percentage and 10 blocks.
Jekaterina Stepanova also had a great performance recording a .378 hitting percentage and nine digs. She was also named Minneapolis Region All-Tournament MVP.
FSU victory Saturday evening, also makes FSU the first-ever ACC team to reach the NCAA Final Four.
The 12th-seeded Seminoles will now go on to face ninth-seeded UCLA at the Alamodome in San Antonio on Thursday, Dec. 15, at 7 p.m.