Volleyball opens PBC/SAC Crossover with 3-2 win over Lander

Volleyball opens PBC/SAC Crossover with 3-2 win over Lander
Box score
GREENWOOD, S.C. --- Five Pioneers finished with double-figure kills in Tusculum College's 3-2 (22-25, 25-22, 25-20, 18-25, 15-9) victory over Lander University in each team's first match of the PBC/SAC Crossover on Friday afternoon. Melissa Mazur registered a career-high 44 digs for TC (7-7).

Rachel Garnett led the Tusculum offense with 14 kills while Sabrina Schleuger added 13. Mariah Lewis found the floor on a career-high 12 kills while Sarah Bouley tallied 11 and Laryssa Welch added 10. Schleuger and Bouley each had double-doubles with 21 and 17 digs respectively. Hannah Berling registered her team-leading ninth double-double of the season with 48 assists and 17 digs.

Both teams traded the first three points of the decisive fifth set before Tusculum scored three-straight to take an early 5-2 advantage. After Lander's (15-5) Khiani Kelly broke up the run with a kill, the Pioneers reeled off three-straight once again to push their lead to 8-3.

The Bearcats got back within three points of the lead with five of the next eight points to make the score 11-8. Tusculum increased its advantage back to five with a LU attack error and a Garnett kill. The Bearcats got one final kill from Tarryn Angermeier before Lewis clinched the match on a kill.

Halle Dotson paced Lander with 14 kills while Korte added 12 and Angermeier tallied 10. Five players registered double-figure digs led by 36 from Julia Ferreira-Alves and 20 each from Korte and Kaitlyn Harrison.

After scoring the first four points of the match, Tusculum held an 18-10 lead towards the end of the first set. However, following a Lander timeout, the Bearcats answered with a 13-2 run to take a 23-20 advantage. TC was only able to cut the lead back to 24-22 before Dotson ended the frame with a kill.

Each squad scored four-straight points to open the second set. Neither side led by more than a point in the set before TC used a 5-1 run to take a 15-11 advantage after back-to-back kills by Lewis. Later in the set, Lewis tied the score at 21-21 with a kill before the Pioneers earned set point by scoring the next three. A Dotson kill fought it off once for LU but she ended the frame with an error in the next rally as TC tied the match at 1-1.

With the third set tied 10-10, the Pioneers reeled off six straight points off the service of Mazur to take a 16-10 lead. The Bearcats scored five of the next six to cut TC's advantage to 17-15 and force the Pioneers to take a timeout. After the break Tusculum scored three-straight and later held a 23-17 advantage. After a Dotson kill got LU back within four of the lead, Lewis finished off the set with a kill.

Facing a 2-1 deficit, the Bearcats led the fourth set wire-to-wire to force the decisive fifth set. LU jumped out to an early 6-1 lead before a 6-2 run by TC made the score 8-7. The Bearcats responded with a 4-0 run and led by at least two points for the remainder of the game.

The Pioneers will be back in action in their second match of the day at 5 p.m. against Francis Marion University.