WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. --- Senior Haylee Leonard and junior Rachel Cutshaw recorded double digit kills, but the Lees-McRae women's volleyball team fell in a five-set nailbiter to Kutztown, 25-17, 25-18, 13-25, 17-25, 14-16 at the Spike Out Hunger Challenge in Whitaker Gymnasium Saturday morning in Winston-Salem, N.C.
The Golden Bears (1-2) had a trio of players with nine kills or more while Anna Conti dished out 38 assists. The Bobcats (1-2) saw junior Madison Martin (Goldsboro, N.C.) turn in her second 20-dig effort of the season with 25.
Junior Whitley Starnes (Kingsport, Tenn.) gave LMC a quick 4-0 lead in the first with three kills and pushed the lead to 11-6 with another one.
KU used a 6-1 run to grab a 17-16 advantage, but a well-timed timeout and strong play from Cutshaw (Whitesburg, Tenn.) and Leonard (Wallburg, N.C.) sparked a 9-1 run that ended the set.
Senior Avalon Liscio (Naples, Fla.) contributed a pair of kills in the early stages of the second set while the Bobcats took a 14-8 lead.
Junior Madigan Gonzales (Ruidoso, N.M.) added two kills late while LMC took the second set with ease.
Following a Leonard kill, the Golden Bears ripped off a 17-6 run to claim the third.
Both teams exchanged points and saw the contest tied at 11 following a kill from Starnes and an ace from Leonard.
KU produced another impressive run, 14-6, to tie the match at two sets each.
LMC sprinted out to a 13-7 lead in the decisive set, but a pair of blocks and attack errors from the Bobcats allowed KU to tie it at 13.
Gonzales and Starnes combined for a block to make it 14-13, but the Golden Bears used a 3-0 run to complete the comeback.
Junior Courtney Weathersbee (Raleigh, N.C.) dished out 41 assists while Liscio and Starnes had eight kills each.
The Bobcats travel to Barry University in Miami, Fla. to battle Southern Conn. St. and Lynn Friday, Sep. 9 at 11 a.m. and 5 p.m., respectively.