All-conference middle attacker Matt McManaway delivered for North Greenvllle at the most critical times to avoid a road upset.
McManaway led all players with three kills and added a block in the decisive fifth game as North Greenville defeated Queens 21-25, 25-21, 26-24, 23-25, 15-9 on Friday in Charlotte, North Carolina.
The senior had a season-high 11 blocks along with three aces and seven kills in the non-conference victory. McManaway entered the match having double-digit kills in four consecutive matches and third in the ConfCarolinas with a .310 attack percentage.
North Greenville (10-11, 4-5 ConfCarolinas) playing with its backup setter out-hit Queens .135 to .052 and had four players with more than five kills.
Opposite Aaron Campbell led the Crusaders with 16 kills, including having a combined 12 kills and one error in the second and fourth games. In addition, outside attacker Kyle Brandt came off the bench after the first game and had nine kills against Queens (4-16).
Outside attacker Nic Cavallaro in the loss had a team-high 16 kills. This was the second consecutive start since returning from a concussion that the freshman had double-digit kills.
Queens libero Connor Nagaki also set single-match program record for the first-year team with 19 digs.
North Greenville in the fifth game led 6-4 and then went on a 6-0 run to help it secure the win. In addition, the Crusaders held the Royals to a match-worst negative-.105 attack percentage in the decisive game.
Cavallaro had a game-high seven kills in the fourth game as the Royals eliminated a late-game four-point deficit and forced a fifth game.
Queens in the third game also fought off two game-points to force overtime. However, North Greenville in the overtime responded with kills back-to-back kills from outside attacker Jackson Gilbert and Campbell to win game three.
With North Greenville trailing 11-8 in the second game, it went on a 5-1 run to take the lead and led by as many as five points before winning the game to tie the match.
Both teams hit in the negative during Queens’ opening-game win. McManaway in the loss had a game-high four blocks, but no North Greenville player had more than one kill.
With this victory, the Crusaders improve to 4-3 in fifth-game matches this season. North Greenville will continue its four-match road trip with ConfCarolinas matches against Emmanuel, Mount Olive and first-place Barton next week.