Raleigh, NC-The Peace College volleyball squad moved ahead of cross-town rival Meredith College in conference standings tonight with a strong 3-1 win at home. The teams were tied for sixth going into tonight's USA South match.
Peace opened round one with an early 7-3 lead, but the Angels made a quick 9-1 run to swing the momentum and control the set. The Pacer offense regrouped and scored 8 of their final 10 points on kills from five players. But the hole was too deep and Meredith's momentum to strong. MC closed the set 25-18 to take a 1-0 match lead.
That win carried into round two and the Angels jumped ahead 5-2 on two kills from match-leader Morgan White. Peace senior middle Elizabeth Evanoff (Manns Harbor, NC) notched back-to-back blocks, including one assisted by Bree Crook (Reno, NV), to keep the Pacers in the mix. The hosts continued to battle and finally edged past the visitor's at 14-13 during a three-point service run from Leah Chandler (Chapel Hill, NC). She led her team on an 11-2 run to put the Pacers ahead by six and eventually capped the scoring at 25-17.
Tied at 1-1, round three once again leaned in favor of Meredith. The Angels opened up with an 8-3 lead with the help of a four-point service run from setter Rebecca Yow. An 8-3 swing forced a Meredith timeout at 11-11. The teams would tie on six more occasions before Pacer setter Olivia Griffin (High Point, NC) notched five straight for her team from the service line. Meredith's White tallied two more of her 17 kills before Chandler capped the win at 25-21 on an assist from Griffin.
Round four appeared to be all Peace. Libero Brandi Pinnell (Louisburg, NC) gave her team a 5-1 opening lead and Crook pushed it to 17-7 on a seven-point service run. Peace took advantage of the lead and cleared the bench. Fortunately, the Pacers held on in spite of a 9-1 Angels run. Lowe sealed the 25-23 victory to give Peace the 3-1 match win.
Chandler and Lowe led Peace with 12 kills; Chandler added 19 digs for her second double-double of the season. Evanoff completed her career at the Hermann Center tonight with a match-high hitting percentage of .318, including eight kills. She also matched her season-high with four solo blocks in the win. Griffin tallied a career-high 40 assists, adding 14 digs, and Pinnell earned a team-high 23 digs. Alleah Pretlow (Raleigh, NC) earned two kills, the first since her opening appearance in September.
Peace closes out the regular season Saturday at Mary Baldwin College. Methodist completes the roster in the final USA South tri-match. First-round tournament action begins Tuesday, November 3, at the higher seed. See you on the sidelines!