FLORENCE, SC – Led by senior Georgia Garrison and sophomore Courtney Abdur-Rahim, Francis Marion University swept Lees-McRae College and came within a couple of points of upsetting Queens University of Charlotte in a marathon five-set contest, all on Saturday (Aug. 25) during the second day of the Coker/FMU Invitational Volleyball Tournament.
The Patriots earned their first win of the 2018 campaign with a 25-20, 25-14, 25-15 sweep of the Bobcats before falling in heart-breaking fashion to Queens, the defending South Atlantic Conference Tournament champion and an NCAA Tournament squad in 2017, by scores of 23-25, 25-16, 26-28, 25-22, 15-13.
FMU (1-3) will return to action on Friday (Aug. 31) at the Fleet Classic Tournament at Erskine College in Due West, S.C. The Patriots will play four matches in the event beginning with a 1 p.m. match-up with UVa-Wise on Friday.
In Saturday's victory, a pair of Patriots posted double-doubles with Garrison tallying 11 kills and 10 digs and freshman setter Finn Millians registering 14 assists and 12 digs.
Abdur-Rahim added 10 kills and four service aces.
In the nightcap against the Royals, freshman Alyssa Hansen recorded a team-high 15 kills, while Garrison added 14 kills. Abdur-Rahim posted her first career double-double with 13 kills and 10 digs, while also serving five aces. Her kills and service aces totals were both career highs.
Millians handed out 41 assists and dug up 22 balls, while freshman libero Alexis Watts had 31 digs.
In the deciding fifth set, Francis Marion rallied from an 11-7 deficit to tie the score at 11-11 on an ace by Watts. Moments later a kill by Hansen re-tied the set at 12-12. However, the Royals notched the deciding point while clinging to a 14-13 advantage and the Patriots serving.
Garrison now stands only 25 digs shy of the 1,000-plateau for her career.
Francis Marion Univ. def. Lees-McRae College 25-20,25-14,25-15
Lees-McRae College (0-4) (Kills-aces-blocks) - Caitlin Smirne 8-1-1;
Lexi Zangari 5-0-3; Erica Slinde 3-2-0; Elissa Small 3-0-1; Hanna
Steckler 2-0-0; Logan Slusher 2-1-0; Kaden Hill 1-0-0; Megan Gallion
1-0-0; Allie Cunningham 0-1-0; Totals 25-5-3.0. (Assists) - Erica
Slinde 15. (Dig leaders) - Caitlin Smirne 11; Allie Cunningham 8
Francis Marion Univ. (1-2) (Kills-aces-blocks) - Georgia Garrison
11-1-1; Courtney Abdur-Rahim 10-4-0; Iyanla Thigpen 6-0-2; Alyssa
Hansen 6-0-2; Kayla Arthur 4-0-3; Madison Taylor 1-0-2; Totals
38-5-6.0. (Assists) - Finn Millians 14; Carrie McGinnis 13. (Dig
leaders) - Finn Millians 12; Georgia Garrison 10
Site: Florence, SC (Smith Univ. Center) Date: Aug 25, 2018 Attend: 177 Time: 1:13
Referees: Joey Asis, Tony Hill Line judges: Jennifer Polak, Danielle Karacson
Liberos: Watts (FMU), Cunningham (LMC)
Queens (NC) def. Francis Marion Univ. 23-25,25-16,26-28,25-22,15-13
Queens (NC) (2-0) (Kills-aces-blocks) - Chanel Turner 25-0-1; Casey
Tarvin 21-3-0; Logan Witt 9-0-5; Gabrielle Montgomery 7-1-1; Lindsay
Elmore 3-0-3; Brooke Farley 3-0-1; Olivia Williamson 1-0-0; Mallory
Swarts 0-3-0; Totals 69-7-6.0. (Assists) - Alexandria Becerra 37;
Brooke Farley 16. (Dig leaders) - Casey Tarvin 32; JayCee Jones 29;
Chanel Turner 18; Alexandria Becerra 15; Mallory Swarts 12
Francis Marion Univ. (1-3) (Kills-aces-blocks) - Alyssa Hansen 15-1-3;
Georgia Garrison 14-1-3; Courtney Abdur-Rahim 13-5-1; Iyanla Thigpen
5-0-3; Madison Taylor 3-0-6; Kayla Arthur 1-0-0; Finn Millians 1-1-1;
Alexis Watts 0-2-0; Totals 52-10-9.0. (Assists) - Finn Millians 41.
(Dig leaders) - Alexis Watts 31; Finn Millians 22; Courtney
Abdur-Rahim 10; Georgia Garrison 9
Site: Florence, SC (Smith Univ. Center) Date: Aug 25, 2018 Attend: 179 Time: 2:23
Referees: Joey Asis, Tony Hill Line judges: Madison Hatfield, Addie May
Liberos: Watts (FMU), Jones (Q)