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Pitt Volleyball

No. 7 Pitt Sweeps Rival Syracuse on the Road



No. 7 Pitt took care of Syracuse Friday night on the road in another sweep in conference play, keeping them perfect as well.

The Panthers’ (23-2 overall, 13-0 ACC) victory is their 16 consecutive overall and 14th straight road victory, the longest in Division I. It is the Panthers third straight victory over the Orange (10-13 overall, 6-7 ACC) and the 250th win of Panthers head coach Dan Fisher’s career. Fisher is the fastest Panthers head coach to 250 wins, doing it in 21 fewer matches than Shelton Collier (1980-88).

Pitt put up leads of 13-9, 19-16 and 21-18 throughout the first set. Syracuse didn’t give up and managed to tie the set at 23 points a piece. A kill from senior middle blocker Chiamaka Nwokolo and an attack error from Syracuse gave Pitt the first set.

The Orange managed to lead midway through the second set, 15-14. The Panthers rallied and scored 11 of the next 14 points to take the set, 25-18. Sophomore setter Rachel Fairbanks led with three kills during the run.

Pitt broke out to a 9-3 lead in the third set, but Syracuse managed to cut in the lead to make it 11-9. Pitt then outscored Syracuse, 10-6 and then traded points with them to take the set, 25-19, and the match.

Graduate right side hitter Courtney Buzzerio starred for the Panthers, as she led with 14 kills on a .447 hitting percentage. She also led with two aces, making it her third straight match with an ace.

Fairbanks led with 16 assists and three total blocks. She added to her well-rounded game by finishing second in kills with 11 and fourth in digs with six.

Redshirt junior outside hitter Valeria Vasquez Gomez finished third with eight kills and .333 hitting. She also provided great defense with eight digs, second best for Pitt, putting her over 500 in her career.

Sophomore outside hitter Julianna Dalton made six kills on .400 hitting percentage and didn’t commit an error, the first match doing so in her career.

Senior libero Ashley Browske led the Panthers with 13 digs and senior setter Lexis Akeo provided 13 assists and seven digs off the bench.

Pitt stays on the road and travels to Chestnut Hill, Mass. to take on Boston College on Sunday, Nov. 6 at 1 p.m.

Sandy Schall, Coldwell Banker
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