CHARLESTON, S.C. - The Mercer volleyball team picked up a pair of wins on Saturday, wrapping up the Charleston Southern Tournament with victories over Canisius 3-1 (18-25, 25-19, 25-22, 25-20) and host Charleston Southern 3-0 (25-19, 31-29, 25-19) at the Buccaneer Fieldhouse.
Mercer's pair of victories moved the team's record to 2-1 on the season, while Charleston Southern fell to 2-4 and Canisius slipped to 1-5. Charleston Southern is scheduled to close out the tournament against Furman at 7 p.m. after Canisius takes on USC Upstate at 4:30 p.m.
Mercer head coach Damian Elder's first victory in Orange and Black was powered by a 16-kill, nine-dig effort from freshman Molly Locke against Canisius. Locke's 16 kills came in conjunction with just three errors, equating to a team-high .394 hitting percentage.
Locke also got it done at the net defensively, contributing four block-assists to Mercer's 10.0 total team blocks. Senior Charlayna Braxton also had four block assists and a block solo, while her classmates Jen Katona and Monica Sanchez each chipped in three block assists.
Mercer out-blocked Canisius 10-7 in the victory, liming the Golden Griffin attackers to a .126 hitting percentage.
Sanchez narrowly missed a double-double in the win, piling up 33 assists and nine digs. Junior Emily Rochefort notched 20 digs and added six assists of her own.
In the second match of the day, Locke was equally impressive with a 14-kill, 14-dig double-double effort. Her 14 kills against Charleston Southern came on 30 swings with only four errors. Six of those kills came in the first set as the Bears cruised to a 25-19 win.
The second set was hotly contested, with 15 tie scores and six lead changes. Back-to-back kills by Locke and sophomore Caroline Carlton helped Mercer break a 29-29 tie and take the commanding 2-0 set lead.
Sanchez dished out 35 helpers in the second win, while Rochefort tallied 20 digs for the second straight game.
Mercer returns to action Tuesday, traveling to Georgia Southern for a 6 p.m. first serve.