Nov. 6, 2013
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - Florida State's sand volleyball team will take its first action of the 2013-14 season on Saturday in an exhibition match against Georgia State University and the University of South Carolina at 9 a.m. at the Florida State Sand Volleyball Complex.
The collegiate sport of sand volleyball is rapidly growing, adding eight schools this year including Saturday's foe South Carolina.
"We are going to be South Carolina's first game, so we are excited to play against them," Florida State junior Stephanie Pellitteri said. "We hope to continue making history for the sport."
Florida State is coming off its second consecutive season of reaching the Final Four in the AVCA National Championships, but as the sport grows so does the competition.
"Each year is going to get harder and harder," Florida State head coach Danalee Corso said. "I don't take anything for granted, ever. We had a great start [last year]. Our biggest thing is to keep the lead. We are not satisfied with third. We feel like we want to get in the final and so do the players. We know we are capable to do that.
"We did have a young team [last year] so with more maturity now and all the dedicated sand time will make us difficult to beat in the future."
The match on Saturday will be an exhibition and will be played as a pool style of play. Each match will contain two sets to 21 points. There will be a total of four pools consisting of three to four pairs in each. Every pair will play at least three matches. The pair who has won the most sets by the end of the day will be considered the winner.
The exhibition will begin at 9 a.m. on Saturday and will play throughout the day. All students in attendance are encouraged to bring their student ID cards so they can earn loyalty points.
Although the Seminoles do not have their full roster because of the conflicting indoor volleyball season, this will be a time for the coaching staff to see the new freshmen in their first competitive action in the sand.
"One of the big things I'm looking forward to is to see how the freshmen are going to compete," Corso said. "They are obviously nervous about seeing how they are going to do in the college scene. They have been working very hard.
"I'm also looking for chemistry between the teams. We have some great chemistry coming in from last year with the [Pellitteri] sisters and Julie [Brown] and Melanie [Pavels]. I'm looking for some more formidable teams in that regard of who plays well together because chemistry is a big part of this game."
The `Noles have been working tirelessly this offseason to improve and reach their goal of a National Championship.
"The girls have been working really hard," said Corso. "We've been lifting a lot and doing a lot of track. We are very excited to showcase our talent right now. I'm very excited about the level of the girls play. We started off as a young team last year, and we are so much better than we ended off last year already."
For more information on Florida State sand volleyball, follow the Seminoles on Twitter @FSU_SVB and like their official Facebook page.