by Cory Guinn
DUE WEST, S.C. – The Barton College men's volleyball team earned a 3-0 (25-17, 26-24, 26-24) victory over Erskine College in Belk Arena to sweep the regular season series.
Barton moved its overall record to 13-4 and improved its Conference Carolinas mark to 9-2, while Erskine fell to 12-5 with a 9-2 mark in league play.
The Bulldogs and Flying Fleet played a five-set thriller on March 3 in Wilson, but BC needed only three sets to secure the win on the road. BC hit just .209 as a team but took advantage of 28 Erskine attack errors to force the Fleet to a .119 hitting percentage.
BC outhit Erskine .346 to .071 in the first set, cruising to a 25-17 victory. Barton used a 9-2 run to build an early lead before scoring four of the final five set points to gain the 1-0 advantage.
In the second set, Barton once again got out to an early lead with a 4-0 run as Erskine battled back to tie the set at 9-9. The Fleet built a lead of 18-13 before BC used a timeout to regain its composure a cut the deficit to 18-16. Freshman Vasilis Mandilaris later tied the set at 24 as back-to-back Erskine attach errors gave Barton the comeback win.
The two sides played to 11 total ties in the third and final set as Erskine held a late 23-19 lead before a 4-0 run by BC tied the match. The Fleet tied the match again at 24-24 but Mandilaris and sophomore Charles Hyde recorded consecutive kills to secure the match win for Barton.
Mandilaris led Barton with 10 kills, as fellow freshman Aleksa Brkovic had seven kills of his own. Hyde and senior Pierre Tang-Taye each finished with five kills, while junior Federico Pagliara had 25 assists. Freshman Kekaulike Alameda led all players with 12 digs in the match.
Barton returns home to host Coker College on Wednesday, March 23 at 7 p.m. in Wilson Gymnasium.