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Pitt volleyball defeats Miami for tenth straight win

Pitt’s volleyball team picked up another big win this weekend, defeating the Miami Hurricanes, three sets to one. The victory is the tenth straight one for the Panthers who are on quite the roll after knocking off Florida State on Friday.

While Miami came in 9-2 and looked like they would be a tougher opponent, Pitt really cruised through the first two sets. They looked extremely sharp and, in particular, really played well at the net. I was a little surprised to see them with ten blocks in the final box score because it seemed like they had more than that.

The third set was a different story, though. Miami took that one 25-21 to force a fourth set. Things got even worse in the fourth as what looked like a bad call went against Pitt late in the set when a ball was called out even though it looked like it hit off a Miami player. Pitt got back up 24-22 and had a chance to close things out but still weren’t ready. A service error by Stephanie Williams cut it to 23-22 and, after some miscommunication by setter Kamalani Akeo and Nika Markovic, Pitt couldn’t capitalize and Miami scored a point to tie it. The Panthers fortunately won the next two points to take the match but this thing could have easily gone to a fifth set.

Despite the late heroics by Miami to nearly tie things up at two sets a piece, you have to be incredibly pleased to see the two road wins in Florida. I went into this weekend thinking Pitt needed to beat either Florida State or Miami and to get both is even better.

One thing Pitt has got to clean up is all of the service errors they make. They had 11 more today against Miami (to their six) and the late one by Williams could have cost them that set.

Pitt will get both of these teams again later in the year so, as a Pitt fan, you hope both continue to have success so that those wins become even more impressive. As I wrote before, the ACC is a bit down this season and there just aren’t a lot of chances for quality wins left. None of the remaining teams on Pitt’s schedule are ranked as of now, even though there are some tough opponents still left.

Pitt hasn’t been getting votes in the Top 25 but I expect that to change come this week. Florida State was just outside of the Top 25 and many of those votes should now to go the Panthers after their convincing 3-1 head-to-head win Friday.

The Panthers are now 13-4 and remain undefeated (6-0) to sit atop the ACC. Next up for the team is another road trip next weekend to Syracuse and Boston College.

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