FLORENCE – The Newberry College volleyball team (3-5) concluded the Francis Marion Tournament with a split, defeating UNC Pembroke (3-0) after falling to Francis Marion (3-2) at the Smith University Center.
On Friday, the Wolves suffered a pair of setbacks, losing 3-2 against Emmanuel and 3-0 against Barton at the Smith University Center.
Newberry hosts in-state rival Anderson (4-4) Tuesday to open South Atlantic Conference play. The match is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m.
Friday Match 1 — Emmanuel 3, Newberry 2
After a furious comeback attempt, the Wolves came up short in their first match at the FMU Tournament against Emmanuel (1-5), losing 3-2 (25-21, 25-23, 23-25, 16-25, 19-17).
Logan Hayward posted a double-double, tallying match-highs of 18 kills and 22 digs. Andie Meredith had a season-high 11 kills. Natalie Willis also notched a double-double with 43 assists and 19 digs. Mary Siebert and Kensley Jordan each accumulated 19 digs in the five set match.
The game came down to a fifth set. Newberry raced out to a 6-1 lead. The Lions hung tough and eventually tied the score at 12-12. Meredith killed the ball home to tie the score at 15-15. A Siebert kill gave the Wolves a 16-15 set lead.
An attack error put the Lions ahead 17-16, but a service error gave Newberry life. The set was deadlocked again at 17-17, before Emmanuel won a dramatic fifth set, 19-17. This was the longest fifth set played since Nov. 16, 2013 when Queens defeated the Wolves, 16-14.
Both sides fought for control in the fourth set and neither team could pull away. A 10-5 spurt by Newberry gave the Wolves a 17-12 lead. The scarlet and gray dominated the rest of the set, winning 25-16.
The third set was back and forth as the two sides combined to tie eight times. Emmanuel led 23-21 before Hayward had back-to-back kills and led the Wolves to tie the set at 23-23. A Sidra Triplett kill gave Newberry a victory in set number three, 25-23.
The Wolves used a 10-2 run to lead in Set 2, 14-6. The Lions then roared back to tie the second set at 21-21. EC eventually won by a score of 25-23. Emmanuel took control early in the first set, jumping out to an 8-3 lead. The Lions used a 10-3 run to extend their advantage to 22-15 before winning 25-21.
Friday Match 2 — Barton 3, Newberry 0
Newberry lost to Barton (1-6) Friday night, losing in straight sets (25-16, 26-24, 25-20). Hayward had her second double-double of the day, finishing with 10 kills and 16 digs. Willis tallied 25 assists.
Newberry struggled out of the gate in the first set, falling behind 7-3. After a brief run by Newberry, Barton held firm and won Set 1, 25-16. Neither team could pull away in the second set. After the score was tied at 23-23, the Bulldogs scored a 26-24 set two victory.
Barton once again got off to a hot start, leading 10-3. Newberry pulled the match to within two at 21-19, but would not get any closer. The Bulldogs took the third set 25-20 to earn the sweep.
Saturday Match 1 — Francis Marion 3, Newberry 2
Newberry found themselves in a five set thriller, but came up short against host Francis Marion (6-2), 3-2 (25-13, 21-25, 25-19, 18-25, 15-12).
Logan Hayward had her third double-double in a row, finishing with 16 kills and 18 digs. Andie Meredith and Toni-Anne Whitlow had 11 kills apiece. Natalie Willis had 41 assists and Kensley Jordan notched 26 digs.
The Patriots took control early in set one and went on to win by a score of 25-13. Newberry answered back quickly in set two, taking a 13-9 lead. Newberry maintained control throughout the rest of the set, and Meredith smashed the ball home to give the Wolves a 25-21 set two win.
The Wolves tied set three at 7-7. FMU managed to pull away and won the third set, 25-19. Newberry led in set four 18-17 and used a 7-1 run to win by a score of 25-19. The fifth set featured five ties and four lead changes. Newberry led 10-8 and tied the set at 11-11. The Patriots gutted out a fifth set win 15-12 to win the match.
Saturday Match 2 — Newberry 3, UNC Pembroke 0
The Wolves returned to their winning ways in the last match of the FMU Tournament, sweeping UNC Pembroke (1-9), 3-0 (25-20, 25-23, 25-19).
Whitlow had a season-high 16 kills to lead Newberry. Willis finished with 36 assists and nine digs. Hayward and Madison Darby-McClure notched eight kills apiece.
Newberry dominated the first set, leading 10-4. The Wolves led the rest of the way and Hayward’s service ace gave the Wolves a first set win, 25-20. The Wolves had a .351 hitting percentage in the first set.
The second set was a back and forth battle. The set was tied at 22-22 before Whitlow notched one of her 16 kills to give Newberry the 25-23 set win. In the third set, The Wolves used a 10-5 spurt to lead 22-17. Newberry held off UNC Pembroke to win the third set 25-19 and sweep the match 3-0.
This release was provided by Newberry College.