MARS HILL, N.C. - The Mars Hill volleyball team (8-4, 2-2 SAC) defeated Queens (6-7, 2-4 SAC) in a four set classic (26-24, 25-21, 21-25, 25-21) Friday night inside Stanford Arena. Sally Anne Johnson had a team-high 15 kills in the win.
The game was tightly contest throughout, as expected, as the Queens and Mars Hill entered the contest sitting in sixth and seventh places, respectively, in the South Atlantic Conference standings.
The Lions were able to edge out the first set, 26-24, capitalizing on back-to-back attack errors from the Royals. Midway through the set, the Lions pulled off a six point run off of a Sarah Goddard service to go up 17-9, but Queens answered back by taking nine of the next 12 points to pull within one. At the 22 all mark in the set, the teams would trade leads and tie until 24 all before the attack errors gave the Lions the first frame. Logan Witt had six kills while Johnson had five, both to lead their respective teams.
Once again, off of a Goddard service, the Lions broke out a five point run to go up early in the second set, 8-4. The teams traded points until the score was tied at 14 before Goddard was able to set up another five point run late to give the Lions a 20-14 edge. She added a kill before her serve to make it a six point run. Queens would threaten in the latter stages of the frame, but the lead built earlier held true as Abby King closed out the set with her first of two kills.
The Royals dictated play in the third set and would win nine of the first 12 points with Witt getting four kills in that span. Mars Hill constantly played catch-up throughout the set and were finally able to tie the frame at 19 off of a Queens' error. The Royals, undeterred, reeled off six of the of the final eight points to force the match into a fourth set.
With little room to make errors in the fourth, both teams were neck and neck until the midway point of the stanza. The Royals, holding a 14-11 lead, would give up the next four points with a kill from Maddie Spurgeon being the catalyst for the Lions. As was the theme throughout the evenly played match, both squads refused to give up more than a one point lead until the 20 all mark. A Mars Hill error gave Queens their last lead of the game before the Lions closed out the victory with five straight points off of the service from Elizabeth Kaeser.
The win snapped a seven-game losing streak against the Royals that began in the 2015 season.
Witt ended the contest with a game-high 18 kills and added four blocks. Jordan Proszenyak had 12 kills and 22 digs while Casey Tarvin added 10 kills and a team-high 32 digs.
Sara Pasour led the Lions with 26 assists and all players with 33 digs. Kaeser ended the night with 11 kills and 16 digs while Goddard had 20 digs, 10 kills and two aces in a solid performance.
Mars Hill travels to Salisbury on Saturday, September 22 to take on Catawba. The game is scheduled for a 2 p.m. start.