PITTSBURGH –The No. 8 University of Pittsburgh volleyball team (7-2, 0-0 ACC) quickly rebounded on Saturday night, defeating JMU (7-4, 0-0 CAA), 3-0 behind a .557 team hitting percentage.
The Panthers went on a pair of mini runs to open the set, establishing an 11-6 lead. A Valeria Vazquez Gomez and JMU’s Hannah Roberts extended the lead to 15-11 and never looked back. Sophomore Dillyn Griffin entered the match and immediately made an impact from the service line, forcing three JMU errors. Kills from Olivia Babcock, Julianna Dalton, Chiamaka Nwokolo, and Blaire Bayless led the Panthers to a 25-14 first set win.
Pitt was even more offensive in set two, hitting .583 as a team with six different Panthers registered at least two kills. The Panthers and Dukes began the first set going back and forth, as JMU was within two at 8-6. Pitt’s offensive balance and a handful of Duke errors caused a JMU timeout at 18-11. A Torrey Stafford service ace and a pair of Bayless and Dalton kills allowed Pitt to win the second set, 25-15.
Vazquez Gomez started set three hot, as she registered three straight kills. After a JMU kill, she went on a 13-0 run, including two aces, six Duke errors and multiple Pitt kills. JMU was unable to capture momentum back, as Pitt dominated the third set, 25-8.
The No. 8 Panthers will compete in the final day of the Panther Challenge tomorrow against High Point First serve is set for 1 p.m. and can be viewed on ACCNX.
• Five Panthers registered at least six kills in the match
• Chiamaka Nwokolo hit a season-high .700 while adding eight kills
• Olivia Babcock hit a career-high .562, adding 10 kills, four digs, four blocks and two aces
• Emmy Klika had a game high 15 digs, averaging 5.0 digs per set