Recapping and reviewing Pitt’s 2022 fall sports seasons


Hannah Wilson | Assistant Visual Editor

Pitt players celebrate during a game against American University at the Fitzgerald Field House on Sept. 9.

By David Scott, Staff Writer

It’s a great time to root for Pitt sports. Nearly every team found success on the field or the court. The fall season ultimately put Pitt on the map as one of the best all-around sports schools in the country. In case you missed some of it, let’s take a look back at each sport’s fall campaigns.


Coming off an ACC Championship win in 2021, expectations were high for the Panthers. The season kicked off with the thrilling win over West Virginia, but it was clear this wasn’t the same team that just won a conference championship. 

Pitt football struggled to start the year, playing to a 4-4 record before they finally kicked into gear. Starting with a win over No. 20 Syracuse, the Panthers won four straight to finish the regular season 8-4. Junior running back Israel Abanikanda shined as the clear MVP of the season, producing high caliber stats every week. His 1,400 yards and 20 touchdowns were the biggest contributing factor to the Panthers’ overall success, but the defense began to lock down toward the end and once again led the nation in sacks.

The 8-4 season was enough to earn Pitt a spot in the Tony the Tiger Sun Bowl. Senior quarterback Nick Patti took the reins for his final game as a Panther, leading the team to a 37-35 win over No. 18 UCLA with help from an all-time kicking performance from sophomore kicker Ben Sauls.

After the rocky start, the Panthers put together a successful 9-4 campaign and set themselves up well for next season through the transfer portal. The future is bright for Pitt football.


Pitt is a volleyball school, if you haven’t heard. The Panthers impressed in 2021 by going 30-4 and battling their way to the Final Four of the NCAA tournament. How do you improve from that?

How about going 31-4, winning the ACC Title and going back to the Final Four for the second year in a row? At one point the Panthers ran up an 18-game winning streak and earned wins over Louisville and got revenge on Wisconsin, who eliminated them from the 2021 tournament.

Pitt volleyball solidified themselves as one of the nation’s premier programs, finishing at the top year after year and bringing in high-class recruits. Head coach Dan Fisher has already recruited the fifth best class in the nation and the best in Pitt volleyball history, and recruitment season isn’t over yet.

Pitt volleyball proved they can remain elite for years to come and rightfully earned their recently announced arena.

Men’s Soccer

Hopefully you weren’t satisfied with one Final Four appearance because Pitt men’s soccer made it there too.

After a 12-5-5 season and getting knocked out of the ACC tournament in the quarterfinals, the Panthers went into the NCAA College Cup unseeded. That didn’t matter much to them, as they battled all the way to the semifinals and produced some thrilling victories along the way. But in their second ever College Cup appearance, the Panthers fell 2-0 to No. 13 Indiana, but it was an incredible run for the Panthers. 

The success didn’t end after the season, as two Panthers were named All-Americans and three were selected in the 2023 MLS SuperDraft, setting a program record. 

Real Salt Lake selected senior forward Bertin Jacquesson with the No. 16 pick and Austin FC selected All-American senior midfielder Valentin Noel with the No. 20 pick as well as Jackson Walti with the No. 56 pick. Graduate student midfielder Jackson Gilman was also named an All-American, rounding out a massive success for the men’s soccer program.

Women’s Soccer

Pitt women’s soccer had arguably their best season ever in 2022 and boasted appearances in both the ACC and NCAA Tournaments.

The Panthers lost in the opening round of the ACC tournament to Notre Dame, but that didn’t stop them from putting up a fight in the NCAA tournament. They were given a No. 4 seed and made it to the round of 16, where they fell to 2022 ACC champions Florida State.

Women’s soccer finished the year ranked No. 12, an incredible result for the program and a step in the right direction for future success.