Men's Volleyball Post Conference Carolinas Road Wins At Lees-McRae And King
Angel Dache recorded a game-high 18 kills, including kills on set point in all three sets, as University of Mount Olive extended its conference winning streak to six with a 25-23, 25-22, 27-25 victory over King University in Conference Carolinas men's volleyball Saturday at Bristol, Tenn. Dache also had 16 kills, including the go-ahead point in the fifth set as Mount Olive scored the final six points of the match on its way to a 23-25, 25-15, 25-23, 16-25, 15-12 victory over Lees-McRae College Friday at Banner Elk, N.C.
Mount Olive (12-10 overall, 9-3 Conference Carolinas) trailed 8-4 in the fifth set against Lees-McRae before a pair of kills by Renzo Rossato and a block by Lewis Einarson and Quaid Marin cut the deficit in half. Einarson and Marin combined on another block, but Lees-McRae (12-10, 4-5) extended its lead to 12-9. The Bobcats, though, would not score another point.
After a side out on a Lees-McRae attack error, Marin had a second-ball kill and the Trojans tied the set 12-12 on a block by Dache and Mike Mann. Dache's kill gave Mount Olive its first lead of the set and the Trojans sealed the win after Bobcat attack errors on the final two points.
Mount Olive overcame a first set loss as Rossato's six-point service run put the Trojans ahead to stay in the second set and evened the match at a set apiece. In the third set, Dache's kill broke a 23-23 tie and Einarson served an ace on set point. Lees-McRae won the first three points of the fourth set and led the entire way to force a fifth set.
Dache notched a double-double with 11 digs and also added five blocks. Mann led all players with six blocks, while Einarson added five blocks. Marin finished with 35 assists.
Against King (8-17, 3-9), Dache again had five blocks and came within one dig of his second double-double in as many matches. Einarson and Mann each recorded four blocks, while Marin tallied 41 assists.
Mount Olive trailed 22-21 in the first set, but a pair of kills by Rossato but the Trojans ahead to stay and Dache's kill capped a 4-1 run to end the set. The second set saw six ties before kills by Steven Cruse and Dache broke a 19-19 tie and gave Mount Olive the lead for good.
The Trojans appeared to have an insurmountable lead in the third set after Kellan Hollingsworth's kill made the score 20-12. King then scored 12 of the next 15 points to go up 24-23 and serve for the set. A King service error and a ball-handling error gave Mount Olive its first match point. The Tornado stayed alive with a block, but kills by Einarson and Dache broke a 25-25 tie and gave the Trojans the win.
With two conference matches remaining, Mount Olive's "magic number" is two to clinch a top two regular season finish and a first-round bye in the Conference Carolinas Tournament, which begins in April.
Mount Olive has its final home match next Saturday as the Trojans play host to Belmont Abbey in Conference Carolinas action. Match time is 2 p.m. at Kornegay Arena.