Spartanburg, S.C.—Junior Elizabeth James led all scorers with 13 kills, and freshmen Ashlyn Wilkson paced the Crusaders with a game high 18 assists, but the Crusaders were un able to ward off a surging Converse team, falling to the Valkyries 3-0 (25-18, 25-22, 25-20) to open a busy weekend in Conference Carolinas play.
The Valkyries stormed out to a six point lead in the first set, only to see the Crusaders pull to within three. With the score 19-16, Converse would rattle off six of the final eight points to take the first set 25-18. NGU started slow once again in set two, but once again battled back, poised to take the lead. The Crusaders evened the tally at 21 with two straight kills from Taylor Dupes and Elizabeth James. The Valkyries never panicked however, and finished the set on a 4-1 run to take a 2-0 set lead.
Converse was solid on offense throughout the night, hitting at an impressive .296 clip for the game, including a second set .333 average. The Crusaders struggled on the offensive side of the net, hitting at a .100 average for the night. North Greenville gained its first advantage in the final set of the night, taking advantage of Converse errors in the early goings to take a 2-1 lead. Dupes would give NGU its largest lead of the day at 8-6 before Converse began its comeback.
The Valkyries would even the score at 10-10, before going on a 6-3 run to take their first lead of the set at 16-13. The Crusaders would struggle to regain momentum in the final points of the match as Converse powered through to take the 25-20 win. On defense, the Crusaders were paced by Codiann Amis who posted 16 digs, while Yomi Adeyeye posted 9 kills offensively. The loss to Converse drops NGU to 2-14 on the season, and 1-5 in league play. NGU will travel to Limestone College on Saturday to take on the Saints at 2pm in Gaffney, South Carolina.