PITTSBURGH -- The Southwestern University Pirates volleyball team opened its road trip out east with a loss to No. 19-ranked Carnegie Mellon in three sets (25-15, 25-16, 26-24).
Carnegie Mellon kept the Pirates off kilter with a balanced, efficient attack, scoring 38 kills on a .298 clip with no single player in double-digit kills. Three Carnegie Mellon players totaled at least nine points with none over 10.
The Pirates struggled early, committing a ball handling error, service error, and three attack errors to fall behind 10-3 early. Southwestern committed seven attack errors in the first set overall, hitting .091 while giving up 10 kills with no errors to Carnegie Mellon, who hit .400.
Carnegie Mellon produced a match-high 15 kills (.333) on 39 attacks in the second while the Pirates hit .119 with six errors.
Southwestern found better rhythm in the third set, taking a 24-23 lead on a kill by Lauren Crabtree, but surrendered three consecutive points to fall 26-24.
Elleanna McGown led the Pirates with eight kills on 29 attacks with four errors (.138), contributing five digs. Riley Brantley and crabtree each had seven kills with Brantley leading the team with a .353 hitting percentage. Crabtree also had 15 assists and 13 digs.
With the loss, the Pirates drop to 19-13 on the season.
Southwestern will play two matches tomorrow, facing Ohio Wesleyan at 12:30 p..m and Genesio at 3:00 p.m. The Pirates will face Texas Lutheran University in the first round of the SCAC Championships on Friday, Nov. 8.