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The Barton College women’s volleyball team was forced five sets before returning to winning ways with a 25-18, 25-19, 23-25, 22-25, 15-9 triumph against visiting UNC Pembroke on Tuesday.
The Lady Bulldogs, front-runners in the NCAA Division II Conference Carolinas, bounced back from last weekend’s league loss with a non-conference win to improve to 18-7. Pembroke of the Division II Peach Belt Conference tumbled to 4-23.
The match featured 10 lead changes and 18 ties.
Down 8-5 in the opening set, Barton rallied to a 10-10 tie on senior Miranda Miller’s kill.
The play sparked a 6-0 Lady Bulldogs run. Back-to-back kills from freshman Kaytlin Elkins and an ace from junior Riley Bane boosted the cushion to eight points. Pembroke drew as close as 23-18 before Barton secured the set on kills from Elkins and Miller.
Barton, in the second set, forged a 7-4 edge on junior Haley Headley’s kill and pushed the margin to 12-8. The Lady Braves trimmed the lead to 12-11 before Barton responded with its second 6-0 flurry. Pembroke pulled as close as 24-19 before Miller’s kill sent Barton to a 2-0 lead in sets.
Pembroke controlled the tempo early in the third set, forging a 12-7 cushion on Kaila Crowder’s kill. The Lady Bulldogs responded with five consecutive points for a 12-12 tie and a Pembroke time-out. Behind the serving of senior Olivia Daley (two aces), Barton upped the advantage to 15-12. Trailing 19-16, the Lady Braves knotted the score at 19-19 and traded points with Barton before claiming a 22-21 lead. Madelyn Ashwell’s kill sealed the set for Pembroke.
Despite Bane’s attempts to spark Barton in the fourth set, Pembroke spurted from a 19-19 tie with three consecutive points and maintained the momentum to force a fifth set. The Lady Bulldogs spurted from a 19-17 deficit to a 19-19 tie.
Barton returned to basics in the decisive set and earned the first four points. Miller’s ace pushed the Lady Bulldogs to a 7-2 advantage and forced a Pembroke time-out. Barton extended the lead to 14-9 before Miller provided the final point with a kill.
Elkins again stood out for Barton with a match-high 24 kills and 11 digs. Miller recorded 15 kills, nine digs and three service aces. Junior Angelica Acevedo responded with another double-double of a match-high 49 assists and 14 digs.
Freshman Ashley Owen delivered a match-high 18 digs and Bane served for six aces.
Pembroke’s Ashwell notched 11 kills and 16 digs, while Bailee Jones accumulated 21 assists and 10 digs. Cayce Bell led with 17 digs.