PREVIEW: Lions to face Queens in SAC Quarterfinal

PREVIEW: Lions to face Queens in SAC Quarterfinal

MARS HILL, N.C. - The Mars Hill volleyball team will take on Queens in South Atlantic Conference quarterfinal action on Tuesday, November 14 at 7 p.m.

The Royals hold the no. 3 seed while the Lions ended the regular season as the no. 6 seed.

HOW THEY GOT HERE

Both teams enter the contest above .500 in their final ten games of the regular season. Queens was 7-3 in that span while the Lions were 6-4. Each team lost their final game of the campaign. Mars Hill fell to the no. 1 seed in the SAC tournament, Anderson, 3-0 as the Royals were also swept by Carson-Newman.

HEAD-TO-HEAD

Queens took both contests against Mars Hill in the 2017 season and currently hold a six-game winning streak over the Lions.

The first match up took place in Stanford Arena in Mars Hill on September 22nd with the Royals coming away with the sweep. Rebecca Butler was the lone Lion to amass 10 or more kills in the contest and had a team-high 17 digs defensively. Sally Anne Johnson recorded six kills on eight swings for a .750 hitting percentage.

Jessica Raines and Rebecca Cochran knocked down 12 and 10 kills, respectively, while Sydney Kunz had a game-high 33 kills and 19 digs.

Mars Hill's attempt at redemption in Charlotte fell short, 3-1, on October 27th. Four Royals, consisting of Cochran, Casey Tarvin, Alex Thompson and Taylor Henry each recorded 10 or more kills in the contest. Lauren Hochstetler had a team-high 13 for the Lions, followed by Butler and Johnson's nine apiece.

Queen's took the first two sets, 25-14 and 25-21, respectively, before the Lions roared back in the third, taking the set 25-21. The Royals asserted themselves on their home court and took the contest in the fourth, 25-16, to clinch the season sweep.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Queens boasts three of the top 15 leaders in kills in the conference with Rebecca Cochran sitting in ninth with 280. Jessica Raines rounds out the top 10 with 262 and Casey Tarvin, with her 253 on the season, sits in 13th. Cochran also places 15th in digs with 355 on the year. Sydney Kunz and Mallory Swarts are key components of the service game for the Royals, leading the SAC with 39 and 38 aces, respectively. Kunz holds the second spot in the conference with 1136 assists.

Mars Hill has four players in the top 25 in kills with Lauren Hochstetler leading the way. The senior from Sarasota, Florida has 249 on the season, good for 16th in the conference. Maddie Spurgeon sits at 22nd with 226 while Rebecca Butler and Sally Anne Johnson are tied for 24th, each with 212 kills. Johnson ranks sixth in the conference with a .285 hitting percentage and 87 blocks. Butler is fifth in the SAC with 499 digs and teammate Hochstetler is eighth with 436 on the season. Setting duo of Sarah Pasour and Abby King have combined for 856 assists throughout the campaign.

The Lions lead all Division II teams averaging 22.73 digs per set and sit third in DII with 2,318 team digs. Mars Hill is first in DII in team attacks per set with 43.58. The Royals rank third in that category with 40.94 attacks per set. 

HOW TO FOLLOW

Queens will be providing live statistics and video for the contest. Click here for the link prior to first serve.

Follow the Mars Hill University Twitter account for live updates.

Check back to the Mars Hill Lions website for postgame coverage.

No. 6 seed Mars Hill travels to Charlotte, North Carolina to take on no. 3 seed Queens on Tuesday, November 14 at 7 p.m.