MISENHEIMER, N.C. – Limestone College and Pfeiffer University got together on Tuesday night for their annual five-set thriller as the host Lady Falcons held on for a 3-2 (25-23, 25-21, 18-25, 18-25, 15-8) victory in Conference Carolinas women’s volleyball action inside the Merner Gym. Pfeiffer improves to 8-17 overall, 5-9 in league play, while the Saints fall to 8-18, 6-8.
A fifth set was needed on Tuesday after Limestone came back from a 0-2 deficit to win sets three and four. In the fifth, three Saints errors and kill by Brianna Jones (Atlanta, GA) put Pfeiffer up early 4-1. After a Regan Youngs (Homewood, AL) kill made it 4-3, the Lady Falcons would burst out on a 5-0 run to create the final separation needed. Kelly Lancellot (Naples, FL) would rack up a pair of kills in that stretch with the other coming from Milana Mervosh (Roebuck, SC). Pfeiffer would cruise from that point on using an ace by Mervosh with final kills from Lancellot, Jessica Homrich (Grand Rapids, MI) and Amber Wooten (East Bend, NC) for the match win.
Pfeiffer had to hold off the Saints at the end of set one as an 18-12 lead after a Jones kill turned into a 23-22 nail biter after a kill from Emylee Gotsch (Deland, FL) and error by the Lady Falcons. Wooten would put down another kill while each team traded errors to end set one 25-23.
Late in set two, Limestone would hold a 19-17 lead breaking a 17-all two with two-straight Pfeiffer errors. A kill by Homrich and ace by Cate Glendenning (Holly Springs, NC) squared it again at 19-19 before kills by Jones, Mervosh and ace from Meghan Davis (Fulton, MO) put Pfeiffer up for good at 22-21. A final put down by Lancellot put the Lady Falcons up 2-0 in the match heading into the 10 minute intermission.
Set three and four saw the Saints battle back to take 25-18 victories forcing the deciding set. A pair of Jessica Onken (Derby, KS) aces started a 4-0 run to kick off set three before using a six-point run taking a 16-13 lead and pushing it to 22-13 en route to the win. Set four saw Pfeiffer hold a 9-7 advantage until a seven-point burst by Limestone put them back up 14-9 forcing a Pfeiffer timeout. A steady diet of kills from Youngs and Gotsch would finish off set four for the Saints.
Jones would lead all attackers on the night with 13 kills for Pfeiffer hitting a match best .522. Homrich and Lancellot would each follow with 10 while libero Nicole Nitu (Highlands Ranch, CO) adding a match-high 18 digs.
Limestone saw Gotsch and Youngs lead the way with 12 and 11 kills respectively. Onken assisted 43 times in the loss while Gotsch completed her volleyball version of a double-double adding 16 digs.
Pfeiffer gets back to action this weekend playing their final regular season games at Barton and Mount Olive on Friday and Saturday. Fighting for the east division’s final playoff spot with Barton and Mount Olive, the Lady Falcons will need victories to clinch a spot in next week’s conference tournament.