AIKEN, S.C. – The Lander volleyball team battled to a fifth set on Tuesday night, but came up just short against USC Aiken in a battle of PBC league leaders.
Lander (18-7, 7-2 PBC) saw its seven-match win streak in conference play come to an end, while the Pacers (24-2, 8-1) avenged a 3-2 loss to the Bearcats on Oct. 24.
Trailing 1-0 after the first set, Lander used a 7-0 run, spurred by the service of Boo Luther, to take a commanding lead en route to a 25-15 set two win. After the Pacers responded to win set three, the Bearcats faced match point trailing 24-21 in the fourth set. A kill from Kyra Ross sparked a Lander run as the Bearcats rattled off five unanswered points to take the set and force a fifth.
The fifth set featured nine ties and five lead changes as USC Aiken broke an 11-11 deadlock by scoring four of the next five points to earn the win.
Madilyn Reed tallied her 13th consecutive double-double with 47 assists and 16 digs for Lander. Maddie Reed recorded a career-high 16 kills, while Ross added 16 kills to go with 10 digs. Maya Walker posted 12 kills and four block assists. Corey Nichols led all Bearcats with 19 digs and Hannah McManus finished with 18. Luther recorded 14 digs.
Lander travels to Flagler Saturday afternoon for a 2:00 p.m. match.
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