Volleyball Outlasts Pittsburgh 3-2
Sept. 8, 2009
PITTSBURGH - Coming off a championship at the Days Inn/James Madison Invitational, the Duquesne volleyball team increased its winning streak to four matches after their 3-2 (9-25, 25-16, 25-23, 20-25, 15-9) victory over visiting Pittsburgh in the volleyball version of the City Game.
The win marked the first time in program history the Dukes (7-1) have defeated the Panthers (5-3) in back-to-back seasons.
Liz Homan led DU with 16 kills and hit a match-best .406. She added a team season-high seven blocks. Nicole Wright recorded her third double-double of the season with 12 kills and 16 digs. Sara Scheirman added 10 kills and 13 digs. Chelsea Tillotson had match-high 42 assists. Amy Palko recorded 16 digs.
Meagan Dooley had a match-best 19 kills and Amy Town added 16 for the Panthers. Allyson Hodnik recorded 40 assists and Michelle Rossi had a match-high 30 digs.
The Panthers set the tone early as they took advantage of 13 Duquesne errors in the first set. With Pitt leading 11-7, they went on a 14-2 run to win the first set 25-9.
DU jumped out to an early 10-4 lead in the second set and never looked back. Tillotson set up Scheirman for the final kill, as the Dukes took the set 25-16, tying the match at 1-1.
The third set began similar to the second, with Duquesne building an early lead, 12-7. The teams went back-and-forth exchanging the next 22 points with neither squad winning more than two points in a row. With the Dukes up 23-18, Pitt rattled off five straight points, trying the set at 23-23. Tillotson set up Homan for a kill before the Panthers' Melissa Stadelman's attack error gave DU a 25-23 victory in a set that lasted 55 minutes.
The two teams played the fourth set close, as it featured 10 ties and 14 lead changes. With the Dukes leading 12-10, the Panthers got back-to-back kills from Imani Harper and Amy Town to take a one point lead. This was the beginning of a 7-1 run that would develop into a 17-13 Pittsburgh lead. Duquesne made a valiant effort at the end of the set, but came up short as the visitors from Oakland forced a fifth and decisive set 25-20.
Duquesne quickly took a 6-2 lead in the fifth set. Pittsburgh would only be able to cut their deficit to two points - which they did on four occasions. Leading 14-9, Tillotson and Homan blocked a Town attempt to give the Dukes the set and match 3-2.
Duquesne will go on a 10-game road trip beginning this weekend in Chicago. The Dukes will be participating in the UIC Invitational facing Michigan State on Friday. DU will play a pair of matches on Saturday, beginning with UIC and concluding the event against Georgia State.
The next match at Palumbo will be Oct. 9 against Charlotte.