Two-time reigning Conference Carolinas Player of the Week Hannah Schellenberg led all players with 20 kills as the Belmont Abbey women's volleyball team extended its winning streak to ten with a convincing 3-0 sweep over the visiting Erskine Flying Fleet this evening at the Wheeler Center. Set scores were 27-25, 25-13 and 25-20. Belmont Abbey improves to 16-3 overall and 9-1 in Conference Carolinas, while the Fleet drop to 6-12 overall and 5-6 in league play.
Schellenberg hit .293 as her 20 kills led all players, 11 of which came in the first set. She also had five digs and a service ace. Caitlin Hankins added six on eight attacks with one error (.625), while adding a dig and a pair of block assists. Gabby Martinez handed out 20 assists and also had 10 digs, while Abby Stine posted 15 assists.
The Crusaders looked as if they were going to run away with the first set, but Erskine rallied back from a 19-11 deficit by claiming the next five points to chop the Abbey's lead to three and forcing a Crusaders timeout. After the pause, Erskine won the next two points to cut the lead down to 19-18.
Belmont Abbey halted the momentum by winning the next two points on a kill from Stine and an Erskine attack error, which extended the Crusaders lead to 22-18.
The Crusaders would eventually build its lead to 23-22 on a kill by Hankins, her first of the match after entering for the first time just before the play, but A.J. Campbell answered with knockdown to tie the set again.
An Abbey attack error gave the Fleet set point, but a service error kept the Abbey alive. Once again, Erskine gained set point on a kill to move ahead 25-24, but Hannah Schellenberg recorded the final three points of the set her ninth, tenth and eleventh kills of the set, to give the Crusaders a 1-0 lead.
The penultimate set was all Belmont Abbey, as the Crusaders hit .290 in the frame as they built a 17-10 lead. The Crusaders won eight of the final 11 points, including the last five, to take a 2-0 lead in the match.
After Erskine won the first two points in the third set, the Abbey scored the next four to claim a lead it would never lose again.
The Crusaders led by as many as six points, but Erskine rallied to close the lead down to one at 19-18. Hankins stemmed the tide with a kill, which started a 3-0 mini-surge that moved the lead to 22-18. Erskine would not get any closer than three points the rest of the way, as the Abbey won the final two points, punctuated by a Fortunato kill to end the match.