OCALA--The College of Central Florida volleyball team's most anticipated home match of the season is here. Santa Fe College, the program that shared the Mid-Florida Conference title last season with the Patriots, visits Ocala for a key match that takes place Tuesday night at 6 p.m. If you are a CF Patriots fan, be sure to #WearRED as they look to red out CF Gym tomorrow night.
CF (15-6, 4-0) leads the MFC, thanks to sweeps in three of its four conference matches.
Santa Fe was thrown for a loop last Tuesday night, as it lost at home in four sets to Daytona State. At the time, SFC was ranked No. 5 in the nation and No. 1 in the state.
Last season, the Saints joined CF as first-year programs to make the state tournament.
CF took the first meeting in five sets behind a record-breaking performance from Julymar Otero at SFC. From there, the Saints won in four sets in Ocala to tie for the MFC title and became just the second team from the conference to win at CF. FSC-Jacksonville was the first MFC program to win at CF in four years.
The Patriots, though, got the upper hand on the series, as they won in five sets in an elimination match at the state tournament.
Currently, Santa Fe is 3-1 in the conference, but the loss to Daytona State has them in third place in the loss column after starting last week as the No. 1 team in the state.
Tuesday's match sees the Patriots coming in winners of 14 of 17 matches and 2-0 at home.
CF played its first 19 matches away from home and has battled back from a 1-3 start.
The Patriots, who have just one returning player on their roster, have been led by Julia Azevedo and Nathaly Alvarez. Azevedo is second in the state with 306 kills, while Alvarez has earned setter of the week on three occasions this season for the Region 8.
Overall, Alvarez leads the state in assists per set (10.99).
The week won't get any easier for the Patriots, as they will host Daytona State on Thursday night at 6 p.m.
CF won has won all five conference matches with the Falcons, but DSC did win a tournament match to open the 2014 season in Tampa.
The Patriots, though, rallied from down 2-1 to win the MFC battle in Ocala last season and then rolled to a four-set victory in Volusia County.
Earlier this season, CF swept DSC on the road.
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