Trojans Top Royals in Four Sets

Trojans Top Royals in Four Sets

ANDERSON, S.C. – Freshman Liliana Kinder led four Trojans in double-figure kills, as the Anderson University volleyball team defeated South Atlantic Conference-foe Queens, 3-1 (25-22, 25-15, 20-25, 25-21) Saturday afternoon at the Abney Athletic Center.

Anderson continued its homestand by improving to 20-2 overall and 11-1 in the conference, while Queens (9-9, 5-6 SAC) saw its win streak halted at three.

Kinder knocked down a career-best 13 kills, while adding three digs and a team-high four block assists. Senior Jayln Knight posted 12 kills and 16 digs for a double-double, with sophomores Regan Duty and Hailee Wilhelm each posting 11 kills apiece. Junior setter Emily Conlin recorded a double-double with 43 assists and 18 digs, while chipping in a pair of service aces. Freshman Meghan DeVaux came up with a match-high 21 digs, with senior Emily Conard adding 14 digs.

First Set
The opening frame set the atmosphere for the rest of the match, as it featured 11 ties, seven lead changes and neither team was able to build more than a five-point lead throughout the set.

With DeVaux serving and Wilhelm knocking down a pair of kills, the Trojans snapped an early 2-2 deadlock with five unanswered points to take the upper hand. AU built the 7-2 advantage behind a .375 hitting percentage, while holding the Royals to a -.250 hitting percentage and forcing Queens to call a timeout. Following the break, the Trojans pushed out to an 8-4 edge, before Queens responded with a 7-1 run and claimed a brief two-point lead, at 11-9.

The score was knotted eight more times before Kinder posted her second kill of the set to snap an 18-18 tie and ignite a late run that propelled AU to the three-point win.

Second Set
AU took an early lead and never trailed, while turning a narrow, 9-8, lead into a 22-10 advantage behind a 13-2 scoring outburst. With Worsham recording three block assists and Knight capping the surge with back-to-back kills, the Trojans built the double-digit advantage.

Queens got within single digits, but no closer down the stretch, as the Trojans claimed the 10-point victory.

Third Set
The Trojans were unable to overcome 10 attack errors and hit just .093 in the setback.

With AU committing three miscues in the opening moments, the Royals jumped out to a quick 5-1 lead and gradually doubled up the Black and Gold, at 10-5. A kill from Wilhelm sparked a 5-0 run by the Trojans, but they were unable to wrestle the lead away from Queens.

The score was knotted at 17-17 and again at 18-18, but the Royals later pulled away for the win.

Fourth Set
The final frame saw eight ties, with AU posting a late surge to capture the win.

The Trojans fell behind 12-7, but rallied to tie the score at 13 apiece, as Kinder's second kill of the set sparked the comeback. Kinder later added another kill and Worsham chipped in a pair of kills during the run.

Later, with the score even at 17 apiece, Wilhelm notched a kill and AU took advantage of back-to-back errors to take a lead it would not relinquish and pushed out to the four-point win.

The Trojans' 16 block assists equaled their third-highest tally of the season.

• The Trojans improved to 8-0 at home this season and stretched their home win streak to 23 consecutive matches.
• AU has reached the 20-win plateau for the second straight season and the third time in five seasons.
• The Trojans posted 19 victories in both 2013 and 2016.
Emily Conlin has 11 double-doubles on the season.
Jayln Knight has nine double-doubles on the season.
Regan Duty has recorded 43 kills (3.07/set) in the last four matches.
Hailee Wilhelm has reached double-figure kills in two of the last three matches.

The Trojans wrap up their four-match homestand by playing host to Mars Hill, Tuesday night at the Abney Center. AU will be looking for a sweep of the season series after defeating the Lions, 3-1, in early September. First-serve is set for 7 p.m.

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