Posted: Mar 20, 2018
BANNER ELK, N.C. -- Liam Maxwell topped 20 kills for the second time in a week and Brian Long hit .412 with eight kills and only one error as Belmont Abbey defeated Lees-McRae 3-1 (25-23, 19-25, 25-19, 25-20) in Conference Carolinas men's volleyball action Tuesday night. Maxwell tallied 25 kills and a .388 hitting percentage after establishing a career-high 28 against Charleston last Wednesday.
Brennan Davis and Bryce Sullivan split duties as the setting, registering 18 and 18 assists, respectively. Pierce Pliapol spearheaded the defensive effort with 12 digs.
Belmont Abbey (8-14, 6-7) jumped out to an early lead by taking the first set 25-23. It broke a 15-15 tie with four straight points then answered back-to-back Lees-McRae scores with three straight points for a 22-17 advantage. The Bobcats (2-15, 0-9) closed the gap with three sets of consecutive points around a Crusaders' point to make the score 24-23, but Maxwell registered a kill to end the set.
In the second set, Lees-McRae took control with a 7-2 run that turned a 17-15 lead into 24-17. The Abbey saved two set points, but a kill on the third tied the match. The Bobcats used four straight points in the third to reverse a 6-5 deficit, but BAC took four of the next five points to even the set at 10-10. After an LMC kill, three straight points on Bobcat errors started a 5-1 surge that gave the Crusaders a 15-12 advantage. They built the lead to 20-15, eventually taking a 2-1 lead with the 25-19 victory.
Belmont Abbey never trailed in the fourth. After scoring the first two points and five of the first seven, Lees-McRae tied things at 5-5. With the score even at 10-10, the Crusaders used back-to-back points to start at 6-2 surge that forced a timeout. It was 20-17 when the Bobcats had three straight errors to stretch the lead to 23-17. Maxwell had the final two points in the 25-20 victory.
Belmont Abbey returns home on Thursday when it faces cross-town rival Queens. The Crusaders will be looking to avenge a season-opening loss in Charlotte.