CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Despite sophomore Hailee Wilhelm equaling her career high with 20 kills, the Anderson University volleyball team wrapped up the regular season with a five-set loss, 3-2 (17-25, 25-18, 25-20, 12-25, 11-15) to Queens, Saturday afternoon at the Levine Center.
Anderson (26-4, 17-3 SAC) saw its win streak halted at five, while Queens (14-14, 10-10 SAC) has won two straight and earned a split of the regular-season series.
INSIDE THE BOX SCORE
Wilhelm shared match-high honors with her 20 kills, while senior outside hitter Jayln Knight posted her 13th double-double of the season with 13 kills and 26 digs. Freshman Liliana Kinder added eight kills and six digs, with junior setter Emily Conlin notching her 19th double-double with 52 assists and 16 digs. Freshman Meghan DeVaux tallied 38 digs, with seniors Mrgan Embry and Emily Conard recording 21 digs and 16 digs, respectively.
HOW IT HAPPENED
The Trojans hit just .067 in the opening frame, but overcame an early four-point deficit to claim a brief 11-9 lead. But the Royals countered with a 9-1 run to take a lead they refused to surrender and closed the set with a 7-3 surge.
The second frame was knotted four times early, with an error by the Royals giving AU a 6-5 lead and the Trojans would not trail again. A kill by Worsham later built AU's edge to 10-7, with the Black and Gold pushing out to a 15-10 lead on a kill by Wilhelm. AU held at least a three-point advantage the rest of the way, while closing with a seven-point cushion.
The Trojans kept the momentum going in the third frame, as they bolted out to a quick 6-2 lead and never looked back.
With AU holding a 10-8 edge, Knight posted back-to-back kills to ignite a 9-1 run that gave the Trojans a double-digit, 19-9, cushion. The Royals refused to surrender and closed within four before AU claimed the win on an attack error by Queens.
AU scored the first three points of the frame, but fell behind, 10-5, and were unable to recover.
The Royals went on to claim a double-digit, 18-8, advantage and forced a fifth and deciding set with the win.
The Trojans again scored the first three points, but Queens countered with a 4-1 surge that knotted the score for the first of four times, at four apiece. The Royals took their first lead of the set by snapping a 7-7 deadlock and would not trail again.
AU battled within 12-11 on another error by the Royals, but Queens responded by closing the set with three straight points.
• The Trojans earned the No. 2 seed in the South Atlantic Conference Tournament and will host Mars Hill, Tuesday night at 7 p.m.
• Coker College will host the SAC Tournament Semifinals and Finals on Friday and Saturday.
• Wilhelm has averaged nearly 16 kills over the last six matches.
• Senior Jayln Knight has averaged more than 10 kills and 15 digs over the last five matches.
• Conard has averaged 12.6 digs per match over the last seven matches.
• The Trojans are 2-1 in five-set matches this season.
Anderson has captured the second seed in next week's SAC Tournament and will play host to No. 7 seeded Mars Hill, Tuesday night at the Abney Athletic Center. First-serve is scheduled for 7 p.m.
2018 SAC Volleyball Championship:
Tuesday, Nov. 6 (at highest seeds)
Game 1: #1 Wingate vs. #8 Catawba, 7:00pm
Game 2: #4 Carson-Newman vs. #5 Lenoir-Rhyne, 7:00pm
Game 3: #2 Anderson vs. #7 Mars Hill, 7:00pm
Game 4: #3 Lincoln Memorial vs. #6 Queens, 7:00pm
Friday, Nov. 9 (at Coker College)
Game 5: winner game 1 vs. winner game 2, 4:00pm
Game 6: winner game 3 vs. winner game 4, 6:30pm
Saturday, Nov. 10 (at Coker College)
Game 7: winner game 5 vs. winner game 6, 2:00pm
SAC TOURNAMENT INDIVIDUAL DAILY TICKETS:
Quarterfinals: Adult - $ 5.00; Youth (12 and under)/Senior (60+) Active or Retired Military - $3.00; College Students with college ID - $ 2.00
Semifinals (at Coker): Adult - $ 10.00; Youth (12 and under)/Senior (60+) Active or Retired Military - $5.00; College Students with college ID - $ 2.00
Finals (at Coker): Adult - $ 8.00; Youth (12 and under)/Senior (60+) Active or Retired Military - $4.00; College Students with college ID - $ 2.00