July 29, 2013
PITTSBURGH - It will be a historic site on September 3 when the University of Pittsburgh women's volleyball team hosts the Pitt International Classic and will share the court with Poland's Tauron MKS Dabrowa Gornicza, a professional club from the Liga Siatkówki Kobiet (Polish Women's Volleyball League). First serve of the exhibition match is set for 7 p.m. at Fitzgerald Field House.
"This match gives our girls the unique opportunity to experience volleyball at the highest level," head coach Dan Fisher said. "Dabrowa was one of the top teams in Europe last year. This competition will give us something to aspire to, and will provide a fun cultural experience. It will be a very exciting volleyball atmosphere."
Dabrowa is coming off a very successful campaign which saw them reach the title series of CEV Champions League, featuring 24 teams from around Europe. In a best of five series with defending champion Atom Trefl SOPOT, Dabrowa captured the first two matches, but then dropped the final three and took the silver medal.
Dabrowa's roster is comprised of nine players from Poland, two from Belgium, one from the Czech Republic and one from Italy. Middle blocker Maja Tokarska was a member of Poland's 2012 Olympic team.
Pitt is just one of many stops during the American Tour for Dabrowa. They will also be playing university such as Notre Dame, Purdue, Ohio State, Bowling Green and Kent State.
The Panthers will have already played their first four official NCAA matches before hosting the exhibition contest with Dabrowa. Pitt opens the season at the University of Missouri's Tiger Classic (Aug. 30-31). Pitt will also compete in the UConn Tournament (Sept. 6-7), the USF Invitational (Sept. 13-14) and will then host the Pitt Panthers Invitational (Sept. 20-21) before jumping into ACC action.
It is a promising outlook for the Panthers under first year head coach Dan Fisher. The Panthers return five starters from last year's squad and 12 players overall. Second Team All-Big East performer Monica Wignot leads the way, while 2012 kills leader Jessica Wynn and 2012 assists leader Lindsey Zitzke are back for their junior campaigns.
General Admission tickets for the Dabrowa match are $5 at the door, while group rate tickets (15 people or more) are available for $1. Group tickets must be presold and can be obtained by calling the Ticket Office at 800-643-PITT (7488).
Following the match, both teams will be available for an autograph session. For more information, continue to check back with www.pittsburghpanthers.com, and also follow @PittVolleyball on Twitter.