Blue Demons Stumble at Pittsburgh
PITTSBURGH -- The DePaul volleyball team stumbled at BIG EAST Conference rival Pittsburgh Sunday, falling 3-0 (30-18, 30-26, 30-17) at Fitzgerald Field House. The Blue Demons slip to 4-11 on the season and are 0-2 in conference play while the Panthers improve to 8-7 and are 2-0 in the league.
The Blue Demons were unable to find an answer for the Panther's aggressive and efficient hitting. As a team, Pittsburgh registered a .301 attack percentage and three players finished with double-digit kill totals. Diana Andreyko led all players with 14 kills and Kelly Campbell followed with double-double -- 12 kills and 11 digs.
Offensively the young DePaul squad could not find a rhythm, combining for a dismal .079 attack percentage and 37 kills. Freshman outside hitter Charla Drabant led the Blue Demon attack with 11 kills, and freshman middle blocker Jacie Fiedler chipped in nine. Freshman setter Christy Landschoot dished out 33 assists.
DePaul jumped out to an early 5-4 lead in game one, but Pittsburgh would answer with an impressive 12-2 run to control the first set. The Panthers used 18 kills and a .341 attack percentage to cruise to a 30-18 victory.
The Blue Demons made some adjustments in the second game and stormed out to a 14-7 lead; capitalizing on seven kills, six unforced Pittsburgh errors and a service ace. The Panthers quickly regrouped and tied the game at 18 on a service ace and took a 19-18 lead on a Blue Demon attack error.
The two teams continued to trade side outs and DePaul pulled within one on Panther attack error, at the 25-24 mark. However it was all Pittsburgh in the final points as the Panthers closed out the match on a 5-2 run and won the second set 30-26.
DePaul tied the third game at seven, but Pittsburgh went on an 8-2 run to steal the Blue Demon's momentum. The Panthers won the final game 30-17 behind Andreyko's six kills.
Defensively, senior libero Maureen Zigulich led all players and DePaul with 16 digs while Pittsburgh's Michelle Rossi finished with 15 digs.
The Blue Demons return to Lincoln Park next weekend hosting Villanova and Seton Hall. Alumni day will be celebrated on Saturday when DePaul hosts the Wildcats at 2 p.m. The Blue Demons and Pirates clash on Sunday at 2 p.m.