BRISTOL, Tenn. – The King University men's volleyball team closed out play at the 2014 King University Invitational by splitting a pair of matches on Saturday, defeating conference opponent Belmont Abbey College in a five-set thrilling match before falling to Quincy University 3-1.
The Tornado found themselves down 2-1 in the match against Belmont Abbey before rallying to take the five-set victory. The Tornado won the first set 25-18 behind an attack percentage of .524 and had three players finish at least half their attempts with terminations. King finished the set on a 9-2 run after a 16-16 tie that included four kills from Nick Serowski.
Belmont Abbey came roaring back to take a 2-1 lead in the next two sets, however. The Tornado struggled to find an answer for the Crusader front line. In the second and third sets, which Belmont Abbey won by scores of 25-22 and 25-16, the Tornado hit a combined -.052 in 77 attempts as the Crusaders compiled 13.5 of their 19 total team blocks in the match. The teams were locked in a tight battle before Belmont Abbey embarked on a 22-6 run that spanned the two sets and gave them control of both.
The Crusaders appeared destined for a win in the fourth set, holding to a 20-19 lead. But a kill from Eddie Moushikhian sparked a King comeback that ended with a Serowski kill and a 25-22 victory. The Tornado controlled the decisive set from the start, limiting the Crusader attack to a hitting percentage of -.111. In the match, Moushikhian led the Tornado with 15 kills, 13 digs, and a pair of service aces while Jeff Bosslet added 36 assists. The loss, coupled with a loss to Coker, dropped the Crusaders to 0-3 on the season and 0-1 in Conference Carolinas play.
In the day's final match, the Tornado took a hotly-contested first set 25-23 before visiting Quincy (2-1) reeled off three straight wins to take the match. King took control of the first set with a 13-5 run that saw a 9-4 deficit become a 17-14 advantage. The Hawks pulled even at 19, 22, and 23 points each, but consecutive kills from Moushikhian and Serowski closed the set for the Tornado.
Quincy took control of the second set at the midway point on a 9-3 run and cruised to a 25-19 victory. In the third set, King led 21-18 before the Hawks rattled off seven of the next nine points to take the set 25-23. Quincy led for much of the fourth set and was able to maintain a two-point cushion over the final points before eventually winning 25-22.
In the match, the Tornado were led by 16 kills from Serowski and 13 from Moushikhian. Setter Matthew DeLong totaled 35 assists in the match, while Matthew Lychock and Moushikhian totaled five and four blocks, respectively.
With Saturday's split, King's record now stands at 2-2 on the season, including 1-1 in Conference Carolinas play. The Tornado next compete on Friday at 7:00 p.m. at home against Saint Francis before hosting Pfeiffer at 3:00 p.m. on Saturday in a conference bout.