Nov. 20, 2009

TAMPA, Fla. - The No. 6 University of Tampa (30-2) volleyball team picked up its third victory over Eckerd College (20-12) this season with a 3-0 sweep at the 2009 NCAA Division II South Regional at the Bob Martinez Sports Center.

With the victory, UT secured its 15th season with 30-plus wins during the Chris Catanach era, including its third in four seasons. Tampa earned the triumph with scores of 25-14, 25-20, 25-11.

The Spartans came out of the gates strong as it took an 11-4 lead early in the first set to establish momentum. UT did not let up, as it trailed just one time in the final two sets. The final frame was a UT runaway as the Spartans went on a seven point rally to stretch a 14-8 advantage to 21-8.

Two-time Sunshine State Conference Player of the Year Melissa Vanderhall led Tampa with 16 kills, including eight in the first set. The junior from Hempstead, N.Y., hit at a torrid pace, notching a percentage of .536. Vanderhall also led UT in the opening round of the regional with 12 kills to go with a .526 clip.

Danielle Selkridge and Kaleigh Cunningham each added eight kills as Selkridge led all Spartans with a .538 hitting percentage. Meghan Sherman tallied a team-high 36 assists.

Freshman Molly Krull earned the start and answered with a career high of four service aces. She also led UT with nine digs. Sam Macks led the UT defense with five blocks, including three solos as Sherman and Selkridge had two blocks apiece.

Tampa enjoyed a stellar offensive performance, as evidenced by its .409 attack percentage. The Spartans also limited the Tritons to a .102 clip. UT finished strong, logging a .577 percentage in the third set. UT also tallied six service aces compared to zero for EC.

UT advances to the regional final, where it will face SSC regular season co-champion and No. 12 Saint Leo University, on Saturday at 7 p.m. The match will be played at the Martinez Center.

Tampa will offer live stats and a webcast through www.tampaspartans.com. Fans may follow University of Tampa athletics on Twitter (www.twitter.com/utspartans) and Facebook (www.facebook.com/tampaspartans). UT also offers eScores, which is a free text messaging service that sends text alerts following all Spartan events.