PBC Volleyball: Top-seed Flagler advances to PBC final with five-set win

PBC Volleyball: Top-seed Flagler advances to PBC final with five-set win

AIKEN, S.C. – Top-seed Flagler College edged No. 4 seed Lander University 3-2 (20-25, 25-19, 25-23, 25-27, 15-10) in a Peach Belt Conference Tournament semifinal match Saturday afternoon at the Convocation Center.

Flagler (23-7) advances to the tournament championship match tomorrow (Nov. 24) at 1 p.m. against No. 3 seed Augusta University with the league's automatic berth to the NCAA Division II Tournament up for grabs. Lander drops to 20-10 and will now wait to see if it receives an at-large berth.

With the score tied at 8-all in the fifth set, Rachel Machovec gave the Saints the lead with a kill and then served an ace to extend the lead to 10-8, which forced the Bearcats to call a timeout. Karlie Redfern added a kill coming out of the break and added another one later to give Flagler a 12-9 lead. A kill by Kennedy Muff and an ace by Rachel Porada gave the Saints match point (14-9). Lander was able to break the first, but Logan Garcia ended the match with a cross-court smash.

Four Saints recorded double-doubles. Rebekah Machovec had her third of the year with a match-high 17 kills and a season-high 20 digs. Her twin sister, Rachel, recorded her 10th double-double with 16 kills and 20 digs. Redfern notched her 11th double-double with 14 kills and 21 digs. Kennedy Muff tallied 51 assists and a season-best 24 digs. Kayla Norelli added 26 digs.

Flagler posted season-highs in kills (67), assists (64), digs (127), and tied a season-high with 14.0 blocks. Garcia finished with nine total blocks while Rebekah Machovec and Redfern each added five more. Jordan Taylor contributed four blocks.

Kyra Ross led the Bearcats with 15 kills and 18 digs. Hannah Hritz added 14 kills while Maya Walker chipped in with 10 more. Madilyn Reed recorded a double-double with 46 assists and 22 digs. She added four total blocks. Hannah McManus collected a match-high 31 digs.