BELMONT, N.C. – In the first of two road trips in the coming week, the King University men's volleyball team traveled to Belmont, N.C. to compete against Belmont Abbey College in a Conference Carolinas tilt. It did not go as planned for the Tornado as they fell in three sets to the Crusaders, moving to 13-11, 9-7 in the conference.
King (13-11, 9-7), in the first set, got on the board first off a Crusaders service error and quickly jumped out to a 3-1 lead on a Nick Serowski service ace. Belmont Abbey took their first lead of the set at four to three and gained a 10-7 advantage off a Brennan Beyner kill. The Tornado got back within two on an Eddie Moushikhian service ace but Belmont Abbey lengthened their lead to four at 17-13 off a King attack error. King came back strong and trailed by three at 22-19 off a Stephen Brown kill off a pass from Nick Drooker and a Belmont Abbey attack error, but it would not be enough as the Crusaders tallied the final three points and went on to win set one 25-19.
Belmont Abbey (12-11, 8-7) came out fast in set two scoring the first three points before the Tornado went on a run of their own recording four straight points, three of which came on Crusaders attack errors. Belmont Abbey came right back and posted three straight points followed by the Tornado adding two straight. The set was all tied up at nine before the Crusaders went on a four to zero run forcing head coach Ryan Booher to call a timeout. Out of the timeout, Belmont Abbey added three more points, opening their lead to seven at 16-9 before Matthew Lychock delivered a kill to stop the Crusaders run. The Lychock kill started a Tornado run as they registered four straight points and tallied 11 points to Belmont Abbey's four. Adrian Besson tied the set up at 20 off a kill but Belmont Abbey scored two straight taking the lead at 22-20 and eventually went on to win the set 25-21.
Set three went the same way for the Tornado but this time they got on the board first off a Lychock kill and a Drooker service ace. Belmont Abbey posted four straight points before King earned three straight, capped off by two Moushikhian kills. The Tornado held an 11-10 lead but Belmont Abbey went on a 6-2 run opening their lead to 16-13. The Crusaders grabbed a 22-16 and raced to a 25-17 win over the Tornado.
King was led by Brown with nine kills while Moushikhian posted seven kills. Chandler Wellmann recorded six digs while Serowski and Brown added five digs. The Tornado recorded an attack percentage of .125 while Belmont Abbey's percentage was .306.
The Tornado will be back in action on Wednesday, April 1 as they travel to Banner Elk, N.C. to take on the Bobcats of Lees-McRae College. First serve is scheduled for 7:00 pm.