Fifth Set Sinks DePaul on Sunday Afternoon
Oct. 28, 2012
CHICAGO - After a four-set win on Friday night against USF, the DePaul women's volleyball team was barely edged by visiting Pittsburgh in five sets (17-25, 25-18, 7-25, 25-17, 13-15) on Sunday afternoon. The Blue Demons took the second and fourth sets from the Panthers, but Pittsburgh won the deciding fifth set by a 15-13 score.
The Panthers (14-12, 5-7 BIG EAST) put together a balanced attack in the first set and used a .273 attack percentage (17-5-44) and 19 digs to take the first stanza, 25-17. The Blue Demons (8-16, 3-8 BIG EAST) were paced offensively by Huebener, who tallied six of DePaul's 11 kills in the first frame.
Looking erase the first set loss, the Blue Demons came out swinging and led by as many as five points in the second set. Led at the net by Callie Huebener and Vesela Zapryanova, the duo combined for nine of DePaul's 11 kills in the frame. A pair of Huebener service aces forced a Pitt timeout with the Blue Demons leading 20-16. Zapryanova closed out the set with two more kills as DePaul went on to win 25-18 and knot the match at one set apiece.
The back-and-forth match continued with Pittsburgh taking the third set 25-7. Pitt tallied 10 kills, while the Blue Demons mustered just six, hitting at a dismal -.033 percentage. The Panthers complimented their offensive efforts with seven service aces which kept the Blue Demons on their heels from the beginning.
Heading into the fourth set, the Blue Demons' offense began to mesh and string points together. DePaul hit .414 (13-1-29) for the stanza with Rachel Aumann and Zapryanova dominating the front line. Aumann hit .833 for the stanza with five kills and Zapryanova's consistency allowed the Blue Demons to run their offense.
Tied a 12 Genesis Reyes headed to the service line and served for four consecutive DePaul points, which put some separation between the two teams. Up 19-15, the Blue Demons closed out the set on a 6-2 run and sent the match to a deciding fifth set.
In the fifth frame, it was Zapryanova who gave DePaul the initial edge once again. The junior racked up three straight service aces to open the set's scoring. Despite going up 8-4 before switching sides, DePaul could no longer fend off the Pittsburgh attack. Unfortunately for the Blue Demons, Pitt battled back and took its first lead of the set at 13-12. DePaul rallied to tie it at 13-all but two straight points from the Panthers closed out the match.
Up next, the Blue Demons hit the road to take on Rutgers and Seton Hall on Saturday and Sunday, respectively.