Volleyball wins four, improves record to 7–8

The Carnegie Mellon women’s volleyball team hosted the Carnegie Mellon Crossover this weekend. Seven schools from Pennsylvania and Ohio attended the tournament.

The Tartans played four games in two days, winning the first three. Adding those wins to a win on Wednesday against the University of Pittsburgh–Greensburg, the Tartans’ season record moves to 7–8. Coming into the week 3–7, the Tartans are now two games away from a winning record.

Warming up for the weekend’s invitational, Carnegie Mellon traveled to Pitt–Greensburg on Wednesday, defeating the Bobcats 3–0 (30–23, 30–25, 30–28). Seniors Catie Fisher and Amanda Bradford led the Tartan offense with 14 and 10 kills, respectively. Senior Brea Carlock had 23 assists, while first-year Samantha Carter added 15 assists to the team total.

Senior Kat Fox led the Tartans defensively with 10 digs, closely followed by first-year Cara Fatigati’s nine. Senior middle hitter Malena Yablinsky had three block assists.

“The competition [Pitt–Greensburg] wasn’t of our caliber, and it was more a good practice for us,” said junior middle hitter Abbie Toney. “We were able to put a lot of the team in, change up positions, and still keep our heads afloat.”

The Tartans played four games during the Crossover, which was held in the University Center over the weekend. Carnegie Mellon played a doubleheader on Friday night, facing Gettysburg College at 6 p.m. and Nazareth College at 8 p.m.

The Tartans outplayed the Gettysburg Bullets 3–0 (30–24, 32–30, 34–32). “Beating Gettysburg, which is our coach’s old team, in only three games was an amazing accomplishment, especially with such close scores,” Fox said. “The team proved that we could work under pressure.”

Carnegie Mellon capped off the night with another 3–0 win against the Nazareth Golden Flyers 30–13, 30–24, 30–17.

Returning to play on Saturday, the Tartans faced Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) at noon and Stevens Institution of Technology at 4 p.m. The Tartans dominated the RIT Tigers, posting a 3–0 (30–21, 30–18, 30–26) win.

“Nazareth and RIT were good confidence boosters. We have a deep bench, and we utilized it during these two games,” Fox said. “It was fun to see that no matter who was substituted into the game, the team adjusted and played together.”

Carnegie Mellon was unable to shut out the competition completely, though, as they fell to Stevens 1–3 in their last match of the tournament.

The Ducks took the first game 30–25, but the Tartans battled back, winning the second game 30–28. Stevens won the next two games (30–26 and 32–30), and won the match.

“Stevens was a tough and upsetting game,” said Fox. “We are a more talented team than them, but something just didn’t click.”

“We need to work on finishing games and stopping the other teams from going on runs,” Toney added. “Volleyball is a sport of momentum, and we need to work on building the momentum and keeping it.”
The volleyball team travels to Emory University this weekend for their first University Athletic Association (UAA) round robin of the season.

“We have tough matches this weekend in Atlanta,” Toney said. “UAA competition is always fierce because we are up against schools with high-caliber academics and high-caliber volleyball programs. It will be fun to see how we play and what our conference is looking like this season.”