BELMONT, N.C. -- Liam Maxwell tallied 14 kills and a .265 hitting percentage and Robert Nixon added 13 kills, leading Belmont Abbey to a 3-1 (26-24, 18-25, 25-19, 25-21) men's volleyball victory over Lees-McRae Wednesday afternoon. The victory was the first of the season for the Crusaders, who improve to 1-4 overall and 1-2 in Conference Carolinas.
In the opening set, Lees-McRae (2-5, 0-2) rallied from a 10-8 deficit for a 15-13 lead. The Bobcats later led 20-16 when Belmont Abbey started to rally. The Crusaders tallied back-to-back points, then answered an LMC point with two more to even the score at 21-21. The Bobcats earned three of the next for points to gain set point, but the Crusaders used a 4-0 for a 26-24 victory.
Lees-McRae came out strong in the second, breaking a 3-3 tie with a 4-2 run. After Belmont Abbey closed to 8-7, the Bobcats scored seven of the next 10 for a 15-10 advantage. The score was 16-14 when three consecutive Bobcat points pushed the margin back to five, 19-14. After a pair of Belmont Abbey points, Lees-McRae scored four of the next five enroute to a 25-18 set win.
The third set was even after 30 points when Belmont Abbey scored three in a row for an 18-15 lead. The Bobcats closed to within one on three occasions, the last at 20-19, but the Crusaders rattled off six in a row for a 2-1 set lead.
The momentum continued in the fourth as Belmont Abbey opened on a 7-2 run. The lead increased to 17-10, but the Bobcats rallied to within 19-16. With the score 23-20, The Abbey earned its first match point a 24-17, then rebounded from a service error with a match-ending kill at Gavin Schaffer.
The Crusaders return to action this weekend with a trip to Coker Friday before hosting King on Saturday.