Photo Courtesy of Jacob Turner
BANNER ELK, N.C. – The Lees-McRae College men's volleyball team battled Friday night against Emmanuel (GA) College but came up just short in four sets (26-24, 18-25, 25-22, 33-31). The loss moves LMC's record to 2-13 overall and 0-8 in league action.
Set 1 – Lees-McRae came out swinging in the opening set outhitting the Lions .257 to .107. However, eight service errors proved costly for the Bobcats as the Lions were able to claw their way to a 26-24 set victory in the opening stanza. Spencer Graf paced LMC in the first set hitting .571 with four kills on seven attacks.
Set 2 – LMC improved its offense even more in the second frame. The Bobcats only attempted 18 attacks but they were efficient hitting at a .333 clip. The added boost from the Lees-McRae offense was enough to knot the score at 1-1 after LMC upended Emmanuel, 25-18.
Set 3 – After the Bobcats held the edge offensively in the first sets, the Lions took the reins in the third. Emmanuel collectively posted 12 kills on 19 attacks with four errors for a .421 hitting percentage. Robert Bowling notched half of LMC's kill output in the third but it proved to be not enough as the Bobcats fell, 25-22.
Set 4 – It looked like the Bobcats would again answer the Lions' third set victory with a win in the fourth. Lees-McRae scored the first seven points in the frame thanks to three kills, two blocks, an ace and one attack error by Emmanuel. The Lions came back to eventually tie the score at 18-18. After Emmanuel came back to tie it, the two teams exchanged leads going back-and-forth forcing extra points. Both squads had opportunities to close out the stanza. Emmanuel ended up getting the final push it needed to close out the match finally at 33-31.
Stat Standouts – The Bobcats were led offensively Friday by Bowling who finished with a team-high 17 kills on 36 attacks. Graf was not far behind with 11 kills on 23 attacks. Defensively, the Bobcats had a stellar night on the block registering 10 team blocks in the contest.
Next Up – Lees-McRae will return to action Wednesday March 14 when North Greenville visits Banner Elk. The Crusaders downed the Bobcats earlier this season in four sets. First serve for that match is set for 7 p.m.