by Cory Guinn
BANNER ELK, N.C. – The Barton men's volleyball team defeated Conference Carolinas foe Lees-McRae College 3-0 (25-14, 25-21, 25-18) on Friday night to move its current winning streak to five consecutive games.
Barton (8-3, 7-1) hit .403 as a team but committed 15 errors at the service line. In comparison, Lees-McRae (4-7, 2-4) hit just .174 as a team and totaled 17 service errors.
The Bulldogs controlled the first set from start to finish, hitting .619 with just one error in the game's opening frame while forcing the Bobcats to hit .071 as a unit.
BC began the set with a 9-3 run, extending its lead to a double-digit advantage following an LMC attack error at 19-9. After trading points late, sophomore Justice Lord put down a kill for Barton's final point.
In the second set of play, Barton once again held an early advantage with an 8-5 lead. The Bulldog lead extended to four points twice, but the Bobcats rallied to eventually tied the set at 18-all.
Head coach Jeff Lennox called a timeout that was followed by a kill from sophomore Nick Leary and another Lees-McRae attacking error to put Barton ahead for good. Freshman Angelos Mandilaris sealed the set victory for Barton with a kill and a service ace to end the period.
The Bobcats kept the third set close in the early going, trailing by just one point before the Bulldogs rattled off three consecutive points to pull away and eventually claim the road win.
Lord totaled six kills and finished with a .714 hitting percentage, while fellow sophomore Vasilis Mandilaris led all players with 12 kills. Angelos Mandilaris narrowly missed a double-double, turning in eight kills and eight digs, as Leary also had six kills in the game.
Barton puts its win streak on the line tomorrow with another road contest in Bristol, Tenn. against King University. The Tornado are currently 10-2 overall with a 5-1 league record and host BC at 2 p.m.