Panthers Rise In AMCC Standings With Win At La Roche

Panthers Rise In AMCC Standings With Win At La Roche

PITTSBURGH – The University of Pittsburgh at Bradford women's volleyball team earned a convincing win over first-place La Roche in straight sets Saturday.

The victory put the Panthers at 6-2 in AMCC games, tied for Penn State-Altoona for first place in the conference. 

"We really stepped up in this big road conference game," Head Coach Tom Roof said. "Defensively, we played really well. Laura, Ally and Alayna were our key players on defense. We were able to set up the blocks we wanted, and that was key. Offensively, we got some good swings. To go down there and sweep a team that is competing for a conference title shows how well we're playing and how motivated our team is." 

The Panthers have now won six-straight matches and have not dropped a single set in the six wins.

Pitt-Bradford was strong out of the gate, jumping out to a convincing 16-6 lead in the first set. 

The Panthers later went up 20-9 on a kill from Erin Fagan.

An Ally Easton kill, Riley Anderson service ace and a La Roche attack error gave the Panthers three-straight points to secure the 25-15 win in the first set.

Set two saw a different start as La Roche climbed out to an 11-5 lead. 

The Panthers climbed back and later tightened the La Roche lead to 19-15 before going on a set-clinching run.

A kill from Emily Cleveland followed by a pair of La Roche errors followed by a pair of points for the Redhawks brought the score to 21-18.

But that's all the Redhawks would get as the Panthers ripped off seven-straight points with Payton Orzech serving to take the win in set two.

The Panthers stayed hot into the third set, storming out to a 10-5 lead.

La Roche later found its offense and brought the score to 13-9, but the Panthers then put them away with a rally.

A La Roche attack error followed by four-straight Panthers points with Cleveland serving put UPB ahead, 18-12. 

La Roche later rallied and brought the score to within one point at 23-22, but a kill from Fagan and a Redhawks error gave Pitt-Bradford the two points it would need to hold on and take the match victory in straight sets.

Easton led the Panthers with 11 kills, the most of her career and her fourth match of double-digit kills.

Cleveland knocked nine kills while Anderson and Fagan had seven each.

Of the Panthers' 39 kills, Orzech assisted 33 of them.

Anderson led the Panthers with 12 digs and Laura Hildebrand had 10.

Easton assisted three blocks and had one on her own. 

Pitt-Bradford has two games remaining in its 2017 regular season, both at home at the KOA Arena. Next, the Panthers will host a non-conference showdown with Buffalo State on Tuesday, then Pitt-Greensburg comes to town for their AMCC and regular-season finale Saturday.