JEFFERSON CITY, Tenn. – With the 2002 South Atlantic Conference championship team in attendance, Carson-Newman turned in one its finest performances of 2017 with a sweep of Newberry 26-24, 25-10 and 25-12 Friday evening in SAC action at Holt Fieldhouse.
Efficiency was at a season-high for Carson-Newman (10-10, 5-7) as the Eagles posted a .327 attack percentage that included just four hitting errors in the final two stanzas. It was the highest tally since the program hit .337 against Columbus State on Oct. 24, 2015, a string of 64 matches.
"I thought our hitters did a great job tonight," Carson-Newman coach Dave Franklin assessed. "Our error percentage – we want it at 12, it was at nine. We were getting kills that made it tough on them. We were hitting shots that made it tough on them and we were getting kills by seeing the block."
Anna Patton (Franklin, Tenn.) was the floor general handing out a season-high 33 assists while picking up four digs, four kills, two aces and one block.
"I think it felt really good," Patton provided. "Our chemistry was really flowing a lot more which is something we had really been working on. Everybody did a really good job of adjusting to the sets especially the middles on the slides."
Marnie Streeter (Goldvein, Va.) was the only player in the match to finish with double-digit kills posting 16 on a .371 hitting clip.
The opening set featured eight ties with six coming at the outset. With the tally level at 10, Newberry reeled off four straight to take control. C-N chiseled away and with the deficit three at 23-20, the Eagles won six of the final seven points fighting off a set point and going ahead 1-0 on a kill from Patton.
"We are growing up," Franklin said. "We are able to grind through some errors and I thought it was awesome to see that. It gave them confidence as we went forward. Our team is getting more and more confident and we are getting more consistent."
The second stanza was a dominating effort by the Eagles as the unit compiled a .500 attack percentage with 3.5 blocks. Franklin's group won eight of the first 10 points. After the Wolves cut the deficit to five at 9-4, C-N ripped off 10 of the next 12 to expand the lead to 19-6. Patton picked up a service ace to seal the set.
Newberry kept the third set close in the early portions. C-N was clinging to an 8-7 edge when it rattled off seven straight rallies to take control at 15-7. The lead was eight at 18-10 when the Eagles won seven of the final nine to finish off the Wolves.
The Wolves saw four players notch five or six kills as the middle combination of Sidra Triplett and Zoe Dinkins had six smashes apiece. Taylor Garrison dished out 18 assists and notched seven digs.
Overall, C-N picked up 47 digs, matched a season high with nine service aces to go on top of seven blocks. Newberry settled for a .075 hitting margin with 41 digs, five rejections and two aces.
The Eagles are back in action Saturday at noon when Coker stops by Holt Fieldhouse for a conference meeting. Viewers can peep the contest on cneagles.com/live as the Eagle Sports Network provides the coverage.
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