Crusaders Hang Tough in Second Straight Five-Setter

Crusaders Hang Tough in Second Straight Five-Setter

CENTRAL, S.C. -- Cassidy Bonito tallied a career-high 48 assists and three others topped double figures in kills, but a Belmont Abbey rally fell short in a 3-2 (17-25, 25-15, 25-15, 15-25, 15-12) setback at Southern Wesleyan in women's volleyball action Saturday afternoon.

Mackenzie Chrapliwy totaled 16 kills, with Lydia Sale and Lexi Henriott registered 14 and 13 kills, respectively. Chrapliwy added 16 digs for her eighth double-double of the season. As a team, the Crusaders (13-9, 7-5) hit .239, while the Warriors connected at a .253 click.

Offensive prowess proved to be the difference in the contest as Belmont Abbey took the first set 25-17 after hitting .306. The Crusaders started on a 5-2 run and never looked back. The lead stretched to 14-7, then a 4-0 run pushed a 17-11 lead to double digits. Over the next two sets, won by Southern Wesleyan 25-15, The Abbey had hitting percentages of .069 and .139, but the number improved in the fourth to a match-high .464 to force a deciding set, 25-15.

Belmont Abbey started the fifth with four straight points, but SWU rallied with a 5-1 run to even the set at 5. After a Crusader kill, the Warriors gained back-to-back points only to see The Abbey do the same for an 8-7 lead. However, Southern Wesleyan scored four straight points to create some separation and hung on for the victory.

Despite the loss, Belmont Abbey clinched a home match in the Conference Carolinas Tournament next month. The Crusaders close the regular season with three straight home matches beginning Tuesday against Coker.