Nov. 3, 2012
PITTSBURGH – Jessica Wynn and Kate Yeazel tied career-highs and Alex Phillips set a new career-high in kills, but the University of Pittsburgh volleyball team (14-13, 5-8) dropped a five decision to USF (14-12, 6-7) on Saturday afternoon (23-25, 27-25, 25-21, 19-25, 12-15) at Fitzgerald Field House.
Wynn tallied a match-high 19 kills, which equaled her efforts last season against Duquesne. Alexa Campbell had 15 kills, and Yeazel notched 14 spikes for the second time this season (14 kills vs. Butler). Phillips recorded a career-best 10 kills on 15 attempts (.533 hitting percentage), and also tied a career-high with five blocks.
Setter Lindsey Zitzke dished out 41 helpers, and Margy Acton moved into 10th place on the single-season digs list with 20 more today. She now has 452 digs this season and 1,337 in her career. Delaney Clesen also reached double-figure digs with 13, while Zitzke recorded her 10th double-double of the season by adding 10 digs to her stat line.
Behind a 4-1 run, the Panthers jumped out to an early 10-6 lead in the opening set. The Bulls however, used an 8-2 spurt of their own and eventually tied the set at 16-16. USF would then take its first lead of at 19-18 on a Pitt hitting error, and with the frame tied at 22, USF scored three of the final four points for the 25-23 victory. Yeazel and Wynn each had five kills, while the Bulls owned a .303 hitting percentage in the set.
As the two teams traded points early on in set two, a 6-2 Bulls run gave USF a 13-9 advantage. Pitt would then score four unanswered points to tie the set at 13 as USF took a timeout. Out of that timeout, USF scored the next three points, but the Panthers continued to battle and eventually evened the frame at 20. From that point, the set was tied five more time, but back-to-back kills from Wynn and Phillips gave the Panthers a 27-25 second set victory.
With USF leading 19-17 in the third set, the Panthers reeled off seven straight points to seize control of the set, going up 24-19. USF would then score the next two points, but Phillips ended the frame with a kill as Pitt took a 2-1 sets advantage.
A kill by USF’s Caitlyn Breen gave USF a 6-5 advantage in the fourth set, and the Bulls led for the remainder of the frame. The Bulls’ largest lead grew to eight at 20-12 after a block by Breen. The Panthers fought back to get within four at 21-17, but USF eventually wrapped up the 25-19 victory. USF recorded six of their 21 blocks in the fourth set.
In the fifth and final set, USF raced out to a 6-1 lead and never trailed. A 3-0 Pitt run closed the gap to 10-8, but the Bulls scored the next three points out of a called timeout to go ahead 13-8. The Bulls had match point at 14-9, but another 3-0 Pitt spurt closed the gap to 14-12. However, J’beria Davis used one of her team-high 14 kills to conclude the fifth set 15-12 and give USF the five set victory.
Pitt had a .228 overall hitting percentage (72K – 33E – 171TA), while the Bulls hit at a .255 clip (59K – 20E – 153TA). USF had a 21-10 advantage in blocks. This was Pitt’s first five set loss of the season as the Panthers are now 2-1 in five set decisions.
The Panthers step out of conference play this Tuesday when they host Robert Morris. Pitt then plays host to Seton Hall on Friday night in its last home match of the season.
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