FORT MYERS, Fla. – The FGCU beach volleyball team (3-5, 1-1 ASUN) host Jacksonville (4-5) on Wednesday for two matches at the ROC. The first match is set to begin at 2 p.m., and the other will follow at 4 p.m.
FGCU is coming off a 3-2 victory at Tampa and a narrow 3-2 defeat at the hands of No. 4 Florida State on March 5 in the Tampa Tournament.
“This is a big day for Florida Gulf Coast University, and our beach volleyball program,” said FGCU head beach volleyball coach Chris Sweat. “From where this program started, to where it is now, it’s nothing short of amazing. It really does take a village and our village is something special here at FGCU.
Butch Perchan and Ken Kavanagh were huge factors in getting this court done. Them, along with Dr. Michael Martin, and campus rec, all played such a big role in securing this third court. Building a top tier facility has always been one of our main goals and we are one giant step closer to that now because of the amazing administration, student athletes, as well as some very supportive parents on our team and alumni. I’m very thankful to be the head coach of a beach volleyball program with so much support from surrounding people.”
Junior Kacie Johnson (Frisco, Texas/ Lebanon Trail) and Maddison Parmelly (Rockwall, Texas/Rockwall Health) lead the Eagles with five wins – having most recently defeated No. 10 Georgia State’s first pair 21-14, 19-21, 15-10. The Green & Blue pair won the season’s first ASUN Pair of the Week on the strength of the Eagles’ stellar first weekend.
Johnson and Parmelly began that weekend by delivering a 24-22, 21-19 victory against No. 12 Florida Atlantic before defeating North Florida’s No. 1 pair 20-22, 23-21, 15-10.
One day later, Johnson and Parmelly defeated Stetson with a hard-fought 21-15, 23-25, 15-12 result before wrapping up the tournament with a 21-6, 21-9 victory against Mercer.
FGCU is 16-7 against Jacksonville and have won the last 13 matchups, with its most recent victory being a 4-1 decision in Huntsville, Ala., on April 23.
For complete coverage of the beach volleyball program, follow the Eagles on Twitter and Instagram at @FGCU_BeachVB, on Facebook at /fgcubeachvb and online at FGCUathletics.com. You can also sign up to have news on FGCU beach volleyball or other programs delivered directly to your inbox by visiting www.fgcuathletics.com/email.
IT TAKES A TEAM to achieve our newest goal – a $10 million campaign to address student-athlete needs in continued academic success, life skills, mental health, nutrition, and strength and conditioning as well as departmental needs in facility expansion and improvement as well as mentoring and leadership training for coaches and staff. The name embodies our mission and the purpose of the E.A.G.L.E. Campaign – Eagle Athletics Generating Lifetime Excellence. Join Our Team and pledge your gift today to help the Eagles of tomorrow!
Sweat’s 2022 team finished with a program-high 29 wins, and Sweat earned his 50th career victory in just his third season as coach. Sweat became the first coach in FGCU program history to earn ASUN Coach of the Year accolade after guiding his team to its 11th-consecutive appearance in the ASUN Championship. The Eagles earned wins over two top-25 teams in 2022, downing No. 17 Stetson and No. 18 South Carolina while also taking down seven different conference squads. Sweat’s FGCU program again ascended to a No. 20 ranking in the AVCA Top 20 in March 2022 and maintained that ranking through the ASUN Tournament. He is in his fourth season as head coach of the FGCU beach volleyball program after spending the prior five seasons as an assistant coach. A member of VolleyballMag.com’s Under 40 Coaching Hotshots list in January 2020, he led the Eagles to a 4-0 start in 2020 prior to the COVID-19 shutdown and has compiled a 53-28 (.654) record
FGCU Athletics sponsors events in November and April to benefit the FGCU Campus Food Pantry (www.fgcu.edu/foodpantry) and the Harry Chapin Food Bank (www.harrychapinfoodbank.org), FGCU Athletics’ charities of choice. For more information, including how to make a contribution, please visit www.fgcu.edu/foodpantry and utilize the hashtag #FeedFGCU to help raise awareness.
FGCU teams have combined to win an incredible 96 conference regular season and tournament titles in just 15-plus seasons at the Division I level. Additionally, in just 11-plus seasons of D-I postseason eligibility, the Eagles have had a combined 48 teams or individuals compete in NCAA championships. In 2022, the men’s golf team became the first program to earn an at-large berth to the NCAA Tournament. Nine FGCU programs have earned a top-25 national ranking in their respective sport – including women’s basketball (No. 20, 2021-22 and No. 22 in 2022-23), baseball (No. 20 in 2023), beach volleyball (No. 20, 2022), and both men’s soccer (2018, 2019) and women’s soccer (2018) as five of the most recent. In 2016-17, the Green & Blue posted a department-best sixth-place finish in the DI-AAA Learfield Directors’ Cup and top-100 showing nationally, ahead of several Power-5 and FBS institutions. In 2018-19, the Eagles had an ASUN and state of Florida best seven teams earn the NCAA’s Public Recognition Award for their Academic Progress Rate in their sport. FGCU also collectively earned a record 3.66 GPA in the classroom in the fall 2022 semester and has outperformed the general University undergraduate population for 27 consecutive semesters. The past seven semesters (Fall 2019 – Fall 2022) saw another milestone reached as all 15 programs achieved a 3.0-or-higher cumulative team GPA. The Eagles also served an all-time high 7,200 volunteer hours in 2017 – being recognized as one of two runners-up for the inaugural NACDA Community Service Award presented by the Fiesta Bowl.