BANNER ELK, N.C. --- The Pfeiffer University men's volleyball team posted 15 blocks and a .314 hitting percentage en route to a hard-fought 3-1 victory over Lees-McRae College in Conference Carolinas play on Saturday afternoon in Williams Gymnasium.
Pfeiffer (7-1, 5-0 CC) won the match by scores of 25-20, 25-22, 21-25, and 25-22, staying unbeaten in conference play while limiting Lees-McRae (5-5, 2-1 CC) to a hitting percentage of .217 on the afternoon. The Falcons recorded 51 digs and 15 blocks, as Lees-McRae dug out 33 Pfeiffer attacks and posted 10 stuffs.
Jose Ribas (Guaynabo, Puerto Rico) paced the Bobcats with a match-high 18 kills, recording a .293 hitting percentage, as John Lucas (Cincinnati, Ohio) chipped in 15 smashes and seven digs. Joshua Jones (Christmas, Fla.) added 10 kills and a .474 hitting percentage, as Randy Ramirez (Guaynabo, Puerto Rico) posted a match-high 50 assists. National digs leader Efrain Negron (Caguas, Puerto Rico) dug out 14 Pfeiffer attacks, as Jones paced the Bobcats with six blocks (two solo, four assists).
Quentin Moore led the way for Pfeiffer with 15 kills and a .290 hitting percentage, as CJ Coatsworth added 11 smashes. Konstantin Weise posted eight kills and a match-high eight blocks (eight assists), as Mark Hess dug out a contest-best 16 Bobcat attacks. Micah Bortner also added 10 digs for the Falcons, while David Specian posted 41 assists.
Pfeiffer started off strong in the first set, taking a 16-11 lead on a block by Weise and Moore. After the Falcons pushed the margin to 18-12, the Bobcats responded with a 5-1 spurt to close the gap to 19-17 on a kill by Matt Harpenau (Cincinnati, Ohio). The Falcons would answer with a 5-2 run, widening the margin to 24-19 before closing out the set on a Specian block.
The Falcons carried the momentum into the second, taking an early 14-8 lead on a Specian kill. Lees-McRae answered with a 7-4 spurt, trimming the margin to 18-15 on back-to-back kills by Jones before launching a 7-5 run to cut the lead to 23-22 on a Ribas smash. Pfeiffer countered with back-to-back points, taking the set on a block by Coatsworth and Lance Johnson.
Lees-McRae fought back in the tightly-contested third set, taking a 16-14 lead on a Ribas kill before Pfeiffer evened the tally at 19-19 following a block by Weise and Bortner. The Bobcats would respond with a 6-2 surge, claiming the set on a Ribas kill to halve the Falcons' lead to 2-1.
The fourth set proved to be a battle of runs, with Lees-McRae responded to a 10-6 deficit with an 8-2 spurt, claiming a 14-12 advantage on a solo block by Harpenau. Pfeiffer would answer with a 6-1 run of its own, taking an 18-15 lead following a stuff by Weise and Coatsworth. After the Bobcats countered with a 6-3 spurt to even the tally at 21-21 on a Falcon miscue, Pfeiffer took the set and match with a 4-1 run, which was capped by a block by Johnson and Weise.
Lees-McRae returns to the court on Thursday, February 23 when the Bobcats travel to Bristol, Tenn. to take on King College in conference play at 7 p.m.
- LMC -