MIAMI, Florida — Florida is often thought of as a place for relaxation.
After a few stressful matches to open the year, Marshall’s volleyball team decided to take the easy path in the Sunshine State this weekend.
On Monday, Marshall earned its second straight-set win in two days over FIU, defeating the Panthers, 25-15, 25-19, 25-16, at Ocean Bank Convocation Center.
All three set victories were similar for the Herd, who moved to 5-1 on the season and 3-1 in Conference USA.
In each of the three sets, Marshall and FIU battled early with each set being tight through the midway point before the Herd surged to finish each set strong.
That trend started in the first set when Marshall had a slim 16-14 lead, but followed by scoring nine of the final 10 points.
During the final stretch, Ciara DeBell recorded four kills, including the final point in the Herd’s 25-15 win.
DeBell finished with 11 kills on the afternoon to lead the Herd.
In the second set, FIU battled back from an early deficit to cut Marshall’s lead to 17-15, but three straight errors and a pair of combined blocks by Macy McElhaney and Olivia Fogo pushed the advantage to 22-15 before the Herd closed out a 25-19 win.
Up 2-0 in the match, Marshall continued its consistent play and again made a surge with the set at 17-15.
A kill by Destiny Leon was followed by two aces from Sarah Schenk and another pair of errors from the Panthers.
Macy McElhaney also had a pair of kills in the final points as the Herd closed out the match with a 25-16 win.
Marshall performed well in the match, achieving a .301 hitting percentage with just 10 attack errors in the three sets.
Errors hindered the Panthers as FIU finished with a .029 hitting percentage, which included a negative mark in the final set.
Monday’s win came after a three-set victory over FIU on Sunday in Miami as well. The Herd has won its last eight sets,dating back to a comeback win over Xavier.
Sydney Lostumo finished with 31 assists in the win for Marshall, who returns to action at 1 p.m. on Sunday against rival Western Kentucky.
The Hilltoppers were picked to win Conference USA’s East Division ahead of Marshall. WKU features C-USA Preseason Player of the Year Lauren Matthews.