FLORENCE, S.C. – The Francis Marion University volleyball team will meet Lander University in the quarterfinal round of the Peach Belt Conference Tournament, Friday afternoon (Nov. 11) at 1 p.m. The tournament is being hosted by Augusta State University in Augusta, Ga.
The 26-10 Patriots will enter the single-elimination event as the second seed, while Lander (9-22) is the seventh seed. The seeding is the highest for the Patriot program since 1999, and the 26 victories is the ninth-highest win total in team history.
FMU defeated the Bearcats in the first round of last year’s tournament in three straight games. The Patriots are 16-16 in previous Peach Belt Tournaments, including winning the 1997 and 1998 tournament titles.
Armstrong Atlantic State University (21-11) is the tournament’s top-seed and received a bye through the quarterfinal round. Fourth-seeded USC Aiken (15-13) will meet fifth-seeded UNC Pembroke (11-20) at 11 a.m. on Friday. Third-seeded USC Upstate (20-12) will play sixth-seeded Augusta State (6-26) in the final quarterfinal match at 3 p.m. The tournament semifinals are set for Friday at 5 and 7 p.m. If FMU wins its quarterfinal match, the Patriots would face the USC Upstate/ASU winner in the second semifinal. The championship match is set for Saturday at 2 p.m.
FMU swept the regular-season series from Lander, winning both matches in three games, and the Patriots lead the all-time series 27-4.
Junior Lezlie Logan leads FMU in kills (3.69 per game), while senior Jessica Bartlett leads the squad in hitting percentage (.298). Freshman setter Jenna Kaiser is averaging 10.21 assists per game, second-best in the PBC. Junior libero Jessica Strader leads the Patriots in digs (4.78 per game), also second-best in the PBC. Logan, Bartlett, and senior Kelly Feber all have more than 1,000 career kills, while both Feber and Strader have surpassed 1,000 career digs.