The Charlotte 49ers used double-digit kills from their top two performers this season to win the fourth match of the last five in a 3-0 sweep (25-23, 25-13, 25-18) over visiting La Salle in an Atlantic 10 Conference volleyball matchup Sunday afternoon in Halton Arena. Charlotte is 4-7 in league play, and with a Rhode Island loss on Sunday, the 49ers and Rams are tied for the sixth and final spot to the A-10 Tournament in two weeks. La Salle slips to 5-23 on the season, 1-10 in the A-10. The teams just played nine days ago in Philadelphia with the 49ers sweeping the Explorers 3-0 in that match.
"We played about as bad as we've played in the last few weeks, particularly coming off a great day of practice on Saturday," said Niners head coach Chris Redding. "I am glad we were able to fight through it and get the win."
Senior Leah Leventhal (Gainesville, Fla. / Santa Fe HS) led all players with 13 kills, while junior Bianca Rouse (Columbia, S.C. / Keenan HS) recorded her team-best 10th double-double of the season with 12 kills and 12 digs in the victory. Rouse leads Charlotte with 288 kills, while Leventhal is second with 195 so far this season.
The Niners and Explorers played a sloppy opening set, with neither team hitting at .100 as 19 combined errors took hold of the play early. The Niners got down 7-2 in the early going, and used a 5-0 run to get to within one and then slowly reel back in the Explorers, eventually catching at 20. The Niners then scored five of the last eight points to take the opening set.
Charlotte only made four errors in the second set, with Leventhal, Rouse, senior setter Sheri Davis (Cape Coral, Fla. / Evangelical Christian HS) and freshman middle blocker Savannah Gaster (Johnsonville, S.C. / Johnsonville HS) hitting .500 or better in the frame.
In the third set, Charlotte only committed four errors again to put away the Explorers and claim the victory.
Davis finished with 20 assists. She and Gaster each added six kills in the match.
Charlotte completes this final home stand of the season with two matches next weekend, starting with Duquesne on Friday night at 7 p.m. and finishing with Senior Day on Sunday afternoon at 1 p.m. against Saint Louis.
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