The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga volleyball team didn't play to the level coach Travis Filar expected during this past weekend's season-opening tournament at Maclellan Gymnasium.
The Mocs exceeded it.
UTC completed a four-match sweep of straight-set victories Sunday, defeating Cal State Fullerton 3-0 (25-11, 25-18, 25-17) to take top honors at the Chattanooga Classic. UTC beat South Carolina State on Friday and topped Presbyterian and Mississippi Valley State on Saturday.
"We didn't have a great week of practice," Filar said, "and I really challenged the team to turn it around Thursday, and they had a good practice.
"Every single match we played better, we played at a bit of a higher level, and I think we beat four different teams with a lot of different styles. Cal State Fullerton is a great ball-control team with a high volleyball IQ, so for us to play the way we did at the level we did, I couldn't have been more excited with that opening weekend and finishing that way for our kids."
Seniors Allie Davenport and Kristy Wieser finished with 10 kills each Sunday on their way to earning all-tournament honors. Miranda Elpers, named the event's most outstanding player, had eight kills and nine digs against Cal State Fullerton, while Lauren Greenspoon had 28 assists and nine digs.
Davenport finished the weekend with 34 kills and 25 digs, Wieser had 30 kills and nine blocks and Elpers had 24 kills and 25 digs. Dani Szczepanski finished with 21 kills and 12 blocks, while Greenspoon had 117 assists. Rachel Petkosh recorded a team-high 42 digs.
Greenspoon, a junior, said after finishing second in the tournament last season, the Mocs were determined to win this edition.
"It was good redemption for us," she said. "We faced a really good opponent that's similar to the people at the top of our conference, so it's a really good win. We focused on what we needed to do and attacked them."
The Mocs return to competition Friday at the Dayton Invitational, where they'll face Northwestern, Xavier and the host Flyers over a two-day stretch.
Contact Gene Henley at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @genehenleytfp.