Nov. 30, 2013
Blacksburg, Va. - The University of Pittsburgh volleyball team (19-14, 11-9 ACC) defeated Virginia (22-12, 10-10 ACC), 3-1 (20-25, 26-24, 25-19, 25-23), this evening at Cassell Coliseum.
"I think this match shows how we've grown as a team," said Pitt head coach Dan Fisher. "We came out a little flat but we battled back and showed how much better we've gotten under pressure."
For the evening, the Panthers were led by senior Monica Wignot who tallied a team-leading 18 kills. Maria Genitsaridi and Jessica Wynn also tallied double-digit kills for Pitt with 13 and 11 respectively. On the defensive side, Delaney Clesen tallied 31 digs and Jenna Potts and Wynn had six blocks apiece.
After dropping the first set by a 25-20 margin, the Panthers rallied back to take the second set by a narrow 26-24 margin. Pitt looked to be on the verge of dropping into a 2-0 hole when it trailed 23-21 late in the second but, following a timeout, Potts registered a kill to cut the lead to one. A service error gave the Hokies match point but the Panthers scored the next four points to win the set in improbable fashion. Another kill from Potts once again got Pitt within a point. An error from VT evened the score at 24-24 before Wignot delivered a kill to put the Panthers ahead. Clesen then stepped to the service line and delivered an ace to clinch the set for Pitt and send the teams into the lockerroom even at a set apiece.
In the third, the Panthers fell behind early at 6-10 before roaring back to even the set at 11-11. From there, the squads exchanged the next eight points to make the score 15-14 in favor of the Panthers. The Hokies would not get any closer in the set as Pitt used a balanced attack to close out the set 25-19. During the set clinching run, four different Panthers registered kills and Pitt took advantage of four Virginia Tech errors to take a 2-1 lead.
The Panthers fell behind, 6-1, early in the fourth set but quickly responded to take a 12-11 lead on an ace from Genitsaridi. From there, the squad went back-and-forth with neither team taking more than a two point lead until Wignot gave Pitt a 23-21 edge on a big kill that was set up by Jenna Jacobson. Following an attack error by the Hokies, the Panthers had set point at 24-21 but VT refused to back down and scored the next two points to get the set within a point at 24-23 forcing a Pitt timeout. The timeout seemed to calm the nerves and the Panthers were able to close out the set and match on a kill from Wignot.
Pitt wraps up its 2013 season with a 19-14 record, including an 11-9 mark in ACC play. The Panthers ended their inaugural ACC season on a six match winning streak and ranked fifth in the Conference standings after being picked to finish 13th in the preseason polls.