By Angela Moryan, Sports Information Assistant
FLORENCE, S.C. – Georgia College Volleyball (14-8, 5-5 PBC) dropped a tough conference battle against Francis Marion University (12-10, 6-7 PBC) in South Carolina Friday night. The 3-1 loss pushes the Bobcats down a spot in the Peach Belt Conference (PBC) standings, but the Blue and Green's even .500 record in the PBC keeps them in the top-five.
Georgia College walked into the Smith University Center looking to extend its four-win streak against the Patriots, but Francis Marion used the home court to its advantage and took the first set 25-22. The Bobcats kept the Patriots at bay in the second set, forcing more time and ultimately coming out on top, 26-24. Set three was a bit of déjà vu, as the Patriots topped the Bobcats 25-22. Finally, the Bobcats hoped to force a fifth, tie-breaking set with a win in the fourth but just could not overcome the Patriot runs, which resulted from strong Patriot attacks and Bobcat errors.
"Tonight was a tough one," head coach Gretchen Krumdieck said. "It's never easy playing on the road. We are looking forward to our next match tomorrow."
Three Bobcat attackers posted double-digit numbers from the four-setter. Sophomore Ebony Powers (Jacksonville, Florida) racked up the most with 13 kills. Up next came right-sider Caroline Long (Roswell, Georgia). The senior's 11 kills granted her a .258 average, the best for the Bobcats. Sophomore Taylor Svehla (Cumming, Georgia) also recorded 11 kills for the match.
Also offensively, sophomore starting setter Kayla Brockway (Jacksonville, Florida) hit the road with 40 more assists. She also had 11 digs, her 13th double-double for the year.
Junior libero Chandler Ewaldsen (Savannah, Georgia) and Powers were the most helpful defensively. Ewaldsen dug up 14 saves, and Powers got 13. She now has eight double-doubles of her own.
Not much movement has occurred in the conference standings since the last Bobcat match. USC Aiken holds firm on the top spot with an 11-2 PBC record. Two games behind lies Flagler College with a 8-2 record. Armstrong State University takes third with six wins and three losses, and just one loss back sits Augusta University at 6-4. Georgia College holds a strong center point at fifth. The top-eight PBC schools will advance to the 2016 PBC Championships, hosted by Georgia College at the Centennial Center in Milledgeville.
The Bobcats jump state lines from Florence to Pembroke, North Carolina overnight and will play the last-ranked school in the PBC, UNC Pembroke (2-24, 0-13 PBC), with first serve scheduled for 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 29. The next home match for the Blue and Green will be Tuesday, Nov. 1 as they host the Columbus State University Cougars, the first match in a long four-conference-match stretch at home.
The Georgia College Department of Athletics, two-time winners of the PBC Commissioner's Cup, sponsors 11 varsity athletic programs at the NCAA Division II level. As a Division II program, Bobcat Athletics prides itself on balancing the life of the student-athlete, evidenced by the teams' multiple appearances in post-season competition as well as documented academic success and community-service involvement. Sign up at @GCBobcats on social media for up-to-the-minute reports, and visit GCBobcats.PhotoReflect.com to purchase photo prints from home athletic contests.