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Lions take down LMU in four sets

Lions take down LMU in four sets

MARS HILL, N.C. - The Mars Hill volleyball team (11-4, 5-2 SAC) defeated Lincoln Memorial (8-4, 4-2 SAC) in a thrilling four set contest inside Stanford Arena Friday night.  Maddie Spurgeon had a team-high 17 kills.

The first set between both teams was a back and forth affair that saw multiple lead changes and extra volleyball played.  The Lions trailed 22-20 before reeling off four of the next five points and earning their first set point of the night.  Lincoln Memorial would take two of the next three to earn themselves a set point before an attack error tied the contest at 26-all.  Another Railsplitters error and kill from Elizabeth Kaeser closed out the 28-26 in favor of Mars Hill. Spurgeon had six kills in the frame while Rylee Storms paced the Railsplitters' offense with seven kills and no errors on 19 attempts.

Lincoln Memorial responded in the second set, taking it by a score of 25-19 to tie the match at one set apiece.  The Railsplitters offense, once again led by Storms' five kills, were able to penetrate the Mars Hill defense and cash in on eight errors by the Lions; the most they made in the match.  Sally Anne Johnson and Spurgeon each had four kills in the second frame.  

The Railsplitters looked to be on their way to going up two sets to one as they pulled away by five points midway through the third set, but the resilient Lions were able to roar back and tie the set late.  With two aces from Kaeser and kills from Spurgeon and Sarah Goddard, Mars Hill took six of the next eight points to enter the latter stages of the frame tied at 21 points apiece.  The Railsplitters would take the following two points, but four consecutive errors would allow Mars Hill to complete their third set comeback and take a 2-1 lead heading into the fourth set.  Alicia Kessler led all players with five kills in the frame and was followed by Kaeser's four to go along with her two aces.

Mars Hill played from behind one more time, trailing once again midway in the final set.  Tied at 19 apiece, two consecutive kills from Spurgeon and a Lincoln Memorial attack error allowed the Lions to build a three point lead that they would not relinquish until the 24-22 mark.  Johnson ended the game for the Lions with a thunderous kill that could not be controlled and secured the fourth straight victory for the Lions.

Storms ended the contest with a game-high 18 kills and added 20 digs.  Emily Walter had 49 assists and 18 digs while Erica Whiteaker led all players with 40 digs.

Johnson hit a team-high .289 to go along with her nine kills.  Abby King and Sara Pasour had 27 and 24 assists, 19 and 10 digs, respectively.  Ully Martins led all Lions with 29 digs.

Mars Hill travels to Newberry on Tuesday, October 2nd to wrap up their regular season schedule with the Wolves.  First serve is set for a 7 p.m. start time.