Aiken, S.C.—The North Greenville Crusaders played in the opening games of the USC Aiken Invitational on Friday night, their second tournament in as many weeks. The Crusaders fell into an early 2-0 hole, but forced a fourth game, after a 25-22 third set win. The Pacers would go on to take the match 3-1 after winning the fourth set 25-19.
Rebekah Mayes led NGU’s offensive attack with 18 kills, her best output of the season. Also on the attack for NGU was Yomi Adeyeye who set a personal best with 15 kills on 45 attempts. Abigail Frame quarterbacked the offense with 43 sets, while also leading the team with 12 digs. Codianne Amis and Megan Steading also had double digit digs with 11 and 10.
The Pacers jumped out to a quick 3-0 lead in the first set. USC Aiken would extend its lead to 5-2. North Greenville would battle back to even the tally at 5, but the Pacers would string together 10-2 run to take a 15-9 lead, en route to a 25-19 match opening win.
The Pacers would go on to take set two 25-20. The Crusaders would get on the board in the third set, after ending the game on a 6-2 run, earning the 25-22, come from behind win. The Pacers rebounded in the fourth set, never trailing as they would go on to take the game and the math with a 25-19 decision.
Fort the match, the Crusaders topped out hitting .215. In their third set win, the Crusaders were solid, with a hitting percentage of .448 (15-29). USC Aiken hit a .241 clip.
The loss drops NGU to 4-2 on the season, while the Pacers improved to 1-0. The Crusaders will wrap up the USC Aiken Invitational Saturday with matches at 10am and Noon against Palm Beach Atlantic and Flagler. The Crusaders will open up league play on September 14th on the road at Limestone College.