Volleyball rallies past Mars Hill 3-1

Volleyball rallies past Mars Hill 3-1
Box score
GREENEVILLE, Tenn. --- After dropping a dramatic first set 35-33, Tusculum College rallied past Mars Hill University 3-1 (33-35, 25-16, 25-15, 25-17) in South Atlantic Conference volleyball action on Tuesday night at Pioneer Arena. TC (5-3, 3-2 SAC) was led by seniors Danae Stauffer, who had 14 kills, and Hannah Berling, who tallied 49 assists.

Melissa Mazur registered her third 30-dig effort of the season with 34. Rachel Garnett found the floor for 11 kills while Sarah Bouley tallied nine. Laryssa Welch, Sabrina Schleuger and Berling each added seven kills to the Pioneer offensive effort while Mariah Lewis had six, a new career-high. Schleuger tallied 10 digs and Kayla Hartley finished with a career-high 12.

Mars Hill (4-5, 2-3) came back from an early six point deficit and fought off two set points to claim the first set 35-33. Lauren Hochsetler led the Lions with 22 kills and 24 digs while Maddie Spurgeon tallied 19 kills. Victoria Kaiser recorded 25 digs while Andie Russell handed out 42 assists. MHU was plagued by its .171 hitting percentage while the Pioneers hit .311.

After dropping the first game, TC responded by winning the next three sets by at least eight points. In the second, Tusculum raced out to an 11-6 lead following a 5-0 spurt. Later, the Pioneers increased their advantage to seven with the score 18-11 following a Lion attack error. TC led by as many as 10 late in the set and tied the match at 1-1 off a kill from Berling.

The Pioneers' biggest lead of the night came in the third set following a 9-0 spurt off the service of Schleuger that gave them a commanding 20-9 advantage. The Lions scored three-straight to fight off multiple set points, but once again Berling closed out the frame with a kill as TC's lead grew to 2-1.

In the third set, the Lions trailed by just one with the score at 11-10. However, the Pioneers reeled off six-straight points to take a 22-15 lead late in the set. Hochsetler collected a pair of kills in the final moments of the match, but Berling's last kill and a Lion service error closed out the game and the match for the Pioneers.

Tusculum will begin a four-match road trip on Friday night in Salisbury, North Carolina against Catawba College. First serve is set for 7 p.m.