COLUMBUS, Ohio – The seventh-ranked Ohio State (20-7) men’s volleyball team will face top-ranked Penn State (28-1) Thursday in the NCAA Championship semifinals at UC Irvine. The Buckeyes, seeded fourth in the championship, received the MIVA (Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association) automatic bid by winning the MIVA Tournament with a 3-0 (30-19, 30-24-30-21) victory over Ball State (21-10). The Nittany Lions, seeded first in the championship, received the EIVA (Eastern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association) automatic bid by winning the EIVA Tournament with a 3-0 (30-24, 33-31, 30-23) win over George Mason (20-8). The second semifinal has third-seed Long Beach State (23-7) facing second-seed Pepperdine (16-10). The 49ers received the at-large bid to the championship while Pepperdine won the MPSF (Mountain Pacific Sports Federation) automatic bid by defeating Brigham Young (25-5), 3-2 (28-30, 28-30, 32-30, 30-27, 15-8) in the championship match of the MPSF Tournament. The semifinal winners play Saturday for the NCAA Championship
A LOOK AT OHIO STATE
The seventh-ranked Buckeyes are coached by Pete Hanson. Ohio State is 20-7 overall and the Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association regular season title with an 11-1 record. Last week Ohio State reached the MIVA Championship match with a 3-0 (30-22, 30-26, 30-27) win over Loyola-Chicago (17-14) in the semifinals. The Buckeyes defeated 10th-ranked Ball State, 3-0 (30-19, 30-24, 30-21) to win the tournament an secure the automatic conference bid to the NCAA Championship Leading the Buckeyes in points per game is Robbie Klein (Sr.-Jr., Cincinnati, Ohio) with a 4.62 average. Brett Versen (5th-Sr., Centerville, Ohio) ranks second at 4.48 with Ben Spurlock (Sr.-So., Stow, Ohio) third at 2.71. Klein leads the team with a 3.93 kills per game average with Versen averaging 3.71. Jason Tobkin (So.-Fr., Fairfield, Ohio) ranks third at 2.09 per game. Spurlock is the top percentage hitter on the squad at .445. Ted Schoenfeldt (So., Northbrook, Ill.) ranks second at .435 with Versen third at .271. Setter Daniel Mathews (Sr., Shorewood, Wis.) is averaging 12.19 assists per game for Ohio State. Klein leads the team with 31 ace serves and a .32 per game average. Versen ranks second with 27 aces and a .29 per game average. Mathews is third with 21 (.23). Defensively, Conor Martin (Sr., Avon Lake, Ohio) leads the team with a 2.33 digs per game average. Mathews ranks second at 1.76 with Klein third at 1.49. Tobkin has a team-high .961 reception percentage handling 440 of 458 attempts. Martin is second at .957 (673 of 703). Klein ranks third at .953 (571 of 599). At the net, Spurlock leads the team with a 1.16 blocks per game average with nine solos and 102 assist blocks. Mathews ranks second at 1.12 (14-90) with Versen third at .85 (11-69). As a team, Ohio State is averaging 19.38 points, 14.72 kills and 13.64 assists per game while hitting .283. The Buckeyes average 1.48 aces, 9.78 digs and 3.18 blocks per game. OSU opponents average 17.06 points, 13.24 kills and 12.67 assists per game while hitting .215. Buckeye opponents average 1.17 aces, 9.34 digs and 2.64 blocks per game.
A LOOK AT PENN STATE
The top-ranked Nittany Lions are coached by Mark Pavlik. Penn State has a 28-1 overall record and won the EIVA regular season championship with an 11-1 mark. The top-seeded Nittany Lions defeated NYU, 3-0 (30-22, 30-21, 30-20) in the semifinals of the EIVA Tournament and with a 3-0 (30-24, 33-31, 30-23) win over George Mason won the tournament championship to secure the conference automatic bid to the NCAA Championship. Matt Anderson leads Penn State in points per game with a 6.47 average. Max Holt ranks second at 4.45 with Ryan Sweitzer third at 4.11. Anderson has a team-high 5.64 kills per game average with Sweitzer second at 3.38 and Holt third at 3.25. Leading the Nittany Lions in hitting percentage is Holt at .560. Ranking second is Max Lipsitz at .493 with Anderson third at .390. Setter Luke Murray is averaging 13.48 assists per game for the Nittany Lions. Holt leads the team in ace serves with 56 and has a .50 per game average. Tied for second on the team are Anderson and Sweitzer with 33 each (.37 per game). Defensively, Dennis Del Valle has a team-high 2.54 digs per game average. Jay Stauffer ranks second at 1.53 and Murray is third at 1.39. Anderson leads the team in reception percentage at .967 handling 463 of 479 attempts. Del Valle, at .957 (486 of 508), ranks second and Stauffer is third at .938 (393 of 419). At the net, Holt has a team-high 1.27 blocks per game average with 12 solos and 105 assists. Ranking second is Lipsitz at 1.08 (7-96) with Anderson third at .86 (6-71). Penn State is averaging 20.83 points, 16.15 kills and 15.23 assists per game while hitting .398. The Nittany Lions average 1.72 aces, 8.75 digs and 2.96 blocks per game. Opponents average 15.11 points, 12.21 kills and 11.49 assists per game while hitting .181. Penn State opponents average .89 aces, 6.19 digs and 2.01 blocks per game.
PENN STATE – OHIO STATE SERIES HISTORY
Penn State has a 58-29-1 lead in the series with Ohio State. The Nittany Lions are 24-7-1 in neutral site matches. Penn State is 23- 6 in matches played at Penn State and 16-10 in Columbus. The teams played twice this season In Columbus (Jan. 19), Penn State won, 3-0 (30-22, 37-35, 30-24). The second match, played at Penn State (March 28), was a 3-1 (30-23, 27-30, 30-20, 30-19) Nittany Lion victory.
A LOOK AT PEPPERDINE
The second-ranked Waves are coached by Marv Dunphy. Pepperdine is 16-10 overall and finished tied for fourth in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation with a 12-10 record. The Waves received the MPSF automatic bid by wining the conference tournament in defeating Brigham Young, 3-2 (28-30, 28-30, 32-30, 30-27, 15-8). Pepperdine defeated UCLA, 3-1 (30-27, 20-30, 30-21, 30-28) in the quarterfinals and beat Long Beach State, 3-0 (30-27, 30-22, 30-26) in the semifinals. For the Waves, Paul Carroll leads the team in points per game with a 7.47 average. Cory Riecks ranks second at 3.85 with J.D. Schleppenbach third at 3.53. Carroll has a team-high 6.48 kills per game average with Riecks second at 3.23 and Schleppenbach third at 2.93. In hitting percentage, Carroll leads the team at .405. Riecks ranks second at .307 and Matt McKee third at .269. At setter, Jonathan Winder averages 12.51 assists per game. Carroll is the team leader in ace serves with 36 and has a .52 per game average. Schleppenbach ranks second with 29 (.29 per game) and Mark Hulse is third with 27 (.27). Defensively, Winder has a team-high 197 digs per game average. Sean Grubbs ranks second at 1.90 with Schleppenbach third at 1.40. At the net, Hulse leads the team in blocking with a 1.41 per game average. He has 11 solos and 130 assists. Tyler Jaynes ranks second at 1.11 (6-72) with Winder third at .91 (17-74). Pepperdine averages 19.47 points, 14.77 kills and 14.03 assists per game while hitting .316. The Waves average 1.45 aces, 8.83 digs and 3.25 blocks per game. Opponents average 19.00 points, 15.48 kills and 14.82 assists per game while hitting .276. Pepperdine opponents average 1.12 aces, 9.22 digs and 2.40 blocks per game.
PEPPERDINE – OHIO STATE SERIES HISTORY
Pepperdine has a 15-4 series record over Ohio State. Two of the wins have come in semifinal matches in the 1977 and 2000 NCAA Championship. The Waves are 4-2 in neutral site matches, 10-2 at Pepperdine and 1-0 at Ohio State. The last two matches against the Waves have come in the NCAA Championship semifinals. Ohio State won, 3-0 (17-15, 15-9, 15-10) in 2000 at IPFW and lost 0-3 (16-30, 29-31, 26-30) in 2005 at UCLA.
A LOOK AT LONG BEACH STATE
The third-ranked 49ers are coached by Alan Knipe. Long Beach State has a 23-6 overall record and was the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation co-champion with Brigham Young with an 18-4 record. The 49ers received the at-large bid to the NCAA Championship after falling, 3-0 (30-27, 30-22, 43-41) in the semifinals of the MPSF tournament. Paul Lotman leads the 49ers with a 6.47 points per game average. Dean Bittner ranks second at 5.75 with Dan Alexander ranking third at 3.72. Lotman has a team-high 5.46 kills per game average. Ranking second is Bittner at 4.86 with Alexander third at 2.65. The team leader is attack percentage is Alexander at .505. Lotman ranks second at .330 with Bittner third at .295. At setter Mike Klipsch averages 13.84 assists per game. Lotman leads the team in ace serves with 60 and has a .57 per game average. Bittner ranks second with 34 (.34) with Alexander third with 31 (.31). Defensively, Dustin Watten has a team-high 2.35 digs per game average. Ranking second is Lotman at 1.53 with Klipsch third at 1.42. The team leader in blocks per game is Alexander at 1.48 with four solos and 144 assists. Bittner, at 1.06, ranks second with five solos and 102 assists. Fletcher Anderson ranks third at 1.02 (6-96). Long Beach State averages 21.12 points, 16.03 kills and 15.31 assists per game while hitting .322. The 49ers average 1.98 aces, 8.69 digs and 3.11 blocks per game. Opponents average 17.03 points, 13.46 kills and 12.76 assists per game wile hitting .238. Long Beach State opponents average .97 aces, 8.38 digs and 2.60 blocks per game.
LONG BEACH STATE – OHIO STATE SERIES HISTORY
Long Beach State has a 6-1 series record against Ohio State. The Buckeyes have lost six consecutive matches to the 49ers since defeating them, 3-2 (4-15, 15-11, 10-15, 15-12, 15-13) in 1981. Long Beach State is 5-1 against Ohio State at Long Beach and is 1-0 in neutral site matches. The last meeting came in 2006 at the Active Ankle Classic at Long Beach, a 3-0 (30-15, 30-26, 30-27) 49er victory.
BUCKEYES PLAYING IN 15TH NCAA CHAMPIONSHIP
Ohio State is making its 15th appearance in the NCAA Championship. The Buckeyes first appearance was in 1975 and last played in the championship in 2005. OSU has advanced to the national championship match in 1977 and 2000. The Buckeyes lost 3-1 to Southern California in 1977 (at UCLA) and 3-0 to UCLA in 2000 (at IPFW).
MATHEWS NAMED AVCA FIRST-TEAM ALL-AMERICAN
Daniel Mathews has been named an American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) first-team All-American as selected by the AVCA Division I-II Men’s Volleyball All-America Committee. A 2007 first-team selection, Mathews becomes Ohio State’s first two-time AVCA first-team All-American.
The 6-5 Mathews directed the Buckeye squad to a 20-7 overall record, winning the Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association regular season championship with an 11-1 mark. He was named MIVA Player of the Year for the second consecutive year and has earned all-conference honors for the fourth time. Mathews was named the Most Valuable Player of the MIVA tournament, collecting the honor for the second time in his career (2005).
For the season, Mathews averages 12.19 assists per game and ranks second on the team in blocks and digs with 1.12 and 1.76 per game averages, respectively. He is third on the team in aces with 21, averaging .23 per game.
MATHEWS NAMED THE MIVA PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Daniel Mathews was named the MIVA Player of the Week for his play in directing the Ohio State offense to 3-0 victories over Loyola-Chicago and Ball State in the MIVA Tournament. Mathews helped secure the tournament championship and the MIVA automatic bid to the NCAA National Championship semifinals. His efforts were rewarded by being named the Most Valuable Player of the Tournament. In the 30-22, 30-26, 30-27 win over Loyola-Chicago, Mathews had 31 assists, adding a match-high 10 digs, five assist blocks and two kills. Ohio State hit .290 in the match. Mathews had 41 assists in the 30-19, 30-24, 30-21 win over Ball State in the championship match. He added nine digs, four block assists and three kills while directing the Buckeyes to a .364 hitting percentage. In the two matches, Mathews averaged 12.00 assist per game and posted a team-high 3.17 digs per game. He averaged 1.50 blocks per game. His nine assist blocks on the week gives him 412 career total blocks (50 solos, 362 assists) and has moved him to fourth on the Ohio State career total blocks list. Mathews is a two-time Most Valuable Player of the MIVA Tournament, receiving the honor in 2005. The last time a player repeated the honor was Ball State’s Eduardo Ferraz in 1995 and 1997.
BUCKEYES WIN 20TH MIVA TITLE
Ohio State won its 20th Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association regular season championship with the three wins to close out the regular season. It marked OSU’s second straight league title and the third in the last five years. For head coach Pete Hanson, it was his 11th championship in his 24-year career with the Buckeyes.
OHIO STATE WINS 11TH MIVA TOURNAMENT CHAMPIONSHIP
With a 3-0 victory over Ball State in the championship match, Ohio State won its 11th MIVA Tournament championship last week. The Buckeyes, by winning the regular season championship, had a quarterfinal bye in the tournament and hosted the semifinals and championship match. Ohio State defeated Loyola-Chicago, 3-0, in the semifinals to advance to the championship match. It was the fourth time in the last eight years for Ohio State to win the tournament. The Buckeyes had three players named to the all-tournament. These were Robbie Klein and Brett Versen with Daniel Mathews being named the most valuable play for the second time (2005). Others named to the team included Ball State’s Patrick Durbin and Ian Peckler and Loyola-Chicago’s Ian Anderson.
KLEIN NOW 11TH IN OSU CAREER POINTS
Robbie Klein combined for 26.5 points in the MIVA Tournament and has moved to 11th on the Ohio State career points list. His team-high 14.5 points against Loyola-Chicago moved him past Mike Terpstra (1990-93). Klein hit .423 against the Ramblers, adding seven digs, one ace serve and an assist block. He had 12 points against Ball State with 10 kills, four digs, two assist blocks and an ace serve.
VERSEN MOVES TO 14TH IN OSU CAREER ACES
Brett Versen, with an ace serve against Loyola-Chicago and two against Ball State, has moved to 14th on the Ohio State career aces list with 61. He moved past Greg Lehman (1998-01), Colin McMillan (1997-00) and Sam Stevens (2004-07), each with 59 aces. Versen needs two aces to move past No. 13 Jeff Koterba (1995-98) with 62.
SCHOENFELDT HAS HIS SIXTH CONSECUTIVE DOUBLE-FIGURE POINTS MATCH AGAINST BALL STATE
Ted Schoenfeldt had 10.5 points against Loyola-Chicago and Ball State for his sixth consecutive double-figure points match. He has had double-figure points eight times this season. Schoenfeldt posted eight kills while hitting .375 against the Ramblers. He added an assist, one dig and four total blocks with a solo and three assists in the match. Against Ball State Schoenfeldt recorded seven kills, an ace serve and five assist blocks.
SPURLOCK POSTS SIX BLOCKS AGAINST LOYOLA-CHICAGO AND BALL STATE
Ben Spurlock posted a match-high six assist blocks in the match against Loyola-Chicago. He had eight kills against the Ramblers while hitting .400 in the match. Spurlock added an assist, one ace serve and four digs in the contest. Against Ball State, he had six assist blocks and added seven kills (.875) for 11 points against the Cardinals. He has had 12 double-figure points matches this season.
TOBKIN IS PERFECT IN RECEPTION ATTEMPTS FOR THE WEEKEND
Jason Tobkin handled all 19 serve receptions against Loyola-Chicago last Thursday adding four kills, two assists, eight digs and three assist blocks in the match. He handled 21 reception attempts, adding six kills, four digs and four assist blocks. His handling of 40 reception attempts without an error last week has his season reception percentage at .961 to lead the Buckeyes.
MATHEWS POSTS A MATCH-HIGH 10 DIGS AGAINST LOYOLA-CHICAGO
Daniel Mathews collected a match-high 10 digs against the Ramblers Thursday night. It was his fourth double-figure dig match of the season. Mathews posted 31 assists against Loyola-Chicago, adding two kills and five assist blocks.
MATHEWS, MORE THAN ASSISTS
Daniel Mathews had a match-high 10 digs in the Loyola-Chicago match, adding five assist blocks, two kills and 31 assists. He posted nine digs against Ball State adding four assist blocks, 41 assists and three kills. His team-high 19 digs in the two matches (3.17 per game) has moved him to seventh in Ohio State career digs with 587. His nine assist blocks (1.50 per game) give him 412 career total blocks (50 solos, 362 assists) and has moved him to fourth on the Ohio State career total blocks list.
CONOR MARTIN BECOMES THE OHIO STATE CAREER DIGS LEADER
Conor Martin, with eight digs in the Ball State match, has become the Ohio State career digs leader with 736. He moved past No. 2 Jose’ Bengoa (1994-97) with 733 and previous career leader Craig Geibel (1990-93) with 734. Martin had two assists against the Cardinals and handled 16 reception attempts without an error. He posted seven digs and one assist against Loyola-Chicago and handled 17 of 19 reception attempts.
HEINE MISSES THE LAST FIVE MATCHES FOR THE BUCKEYES
Kevin Heine did not play in the final three regular season matches and the two MIVA tournament matches for the Buckeyes. A starter in 15 of the 17 matches he has played in, he is averaging 2.74 points, 1.96 kills and has a team-high 1.27 blocks per game.
LUHRSEN SEES ACTION AGAINST MERCYHURST
John Luhrsen (So.-Fr., Wheaton, Ill.) had a career-high two digs against Mercyhurst after missing the last four matches. He has played in 14 matches for a total of 22 games. Luhrsen has six digs and a kill on the season.
KLANAC RETURNS TO ACTION AGAINST MERCYHURST
John Klanac (So.-Fr., Orchard Park, N.Y.) missed eight consecutive matches before returning to action against Mercyhurst. He played in three games against the Lakers recording two kills. Klanac has played in 17 matches and has nine starts. He is averaging 2.30 points, 1.89 kills, .20 aces, 1.11 digs and .41 blocks per game. Klanac has a .952 reception percentage handling 178 of 187 attempts.
KUES POSTS A CAREER-HIGH 14 DIGS AT IPFW
Brian Kues collected a career-high 14 digs at IPFW coming off the bench against the Mastodons. He started at libero in game two and played the rest of the match. He added an assist and handled 13 of 15 reception attempts in the match. Kues started at libero in the Ball State match recording five digs, two assists and handled 23 of 25 reception attempts. Kues saw limited action in two games against Loyola-Chicago.
KEHOE COLLECTS 13 ASSISTS AGAINST MERCYHURST
Steven Kehoe recorded 13 assists in the third game of the Mercyhurst match. He added two digs and an ace serve in the two games he played in. He played at IPFW with no statistics. Kehoe played in two games against Loyola-Chicago and recorded an ace serve in the match.
ALBERTSON SEES FIRST ACTION SINCE EARLY JANUARY
John Albertson, after missing 22 matches, returned to action against Mercyhurst in the final regular season match. He started at middle blocker against IPFW and Penn State before returning to play against the Lakers. He played in one game against Mercyhurst, recording two kills. Albertson came in against Ball State in game one on match point at 29-19 to record an assist block to help win that game.
SEAN MARTIN ASSISTS IN THE BACK ROW
Sean Martin (So.-Fr., Lakewood, Ohio) saw action at IPFW and against Ball State during the final week of the regular season in back row action.
OHIO STATE RANKED SEVENTH IN THE CBS COLLEGE SPORTS NETWORK/AVCA COACHES POLL-April 21
Ohio State is ranked seventh in the CBS College Sports Network/AVCA Division I-II Men’s Top 15 Coaches Poll released April 28. OSU moved up two spots from last week. The Buckeyes began the season ranked 10th in the preseason poll and have been as high as seventh. Other MIVA conference teams ranked in the poll are Ball State 10th and Lewis 14th.
OHIO STATE RANKED SIXTH IN THE MOLTEN/VOLLEYBALL MAGAZINE POLL
Ohio State was ranked sixth in the Molten Volleyball Magazine Men’s College Top 10 Poll released April 22. Ohio State began the 2008 season unranked in the Top 10, but had received votes. The Buckeyes have been as high as fifth in the poll. MIVA opponent Ball State is ranked tied for eighth. The poll is conducted by Volleyball Magazine and voted on by members of the national men’s volleyball media. The final poll will be released May 6.
OHIO STATE IN THE NATIONAL STATISTICS
Ohio State had five players ranked in the April 21 release of the NCAA Division I-II National Statistics Leaders. Kevin Heine is ranked fourth in hitting percentage at .478 with Ben Spurlock ninth at .436. Heine is 14th in blocking at 1.27 per game. Connor Martin has a 2.32 digs per game average and is 17th. Daniel Mathews is ranked seventh in assists per game with an 12.21 average. Robbie Klein ranks 219th in points per game at 4.64 and is 18th in kills per game at .393.
OHIO STATE IN THE MIVA STATISTICS
The Buckeyes are well represented in the final conference-only statistics of the Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association. The Buckeyes had no individual statistical championship but had several players highly ranked. Robbie Klein finished second in kills per game at 3.96. Brett Versen ranked seventh at 3.66. In attack percentage, Ben Spurlock finished second at .455, just .0005 behind the champion. Ted Schoenfeldt ranked six at .411 with Versen 16th at .264 and Klein 19th at .248. Klein finished third in points per game with a 4.54 average. Versen was fifth at 4.50. In digs per game, Conor Martin was third at 2.59 with Daniel Mathews fifth at 1.76. Klein finished 18th at 1.46 and Versen was 20th at 1.43. At setter, Mathews ranks fourth with a 12.13 assist per game average. In blocking, Spurlock finished fifth with a 1.24 per game average. Schoenfeldt was sixth at 1.14 with Mathews 10th at 1.04 and Versen 16th at .84. Versen finished tied for seventh in aces per game at .36. Schoenfeldt was ninth and Mathews 10th, both at .36. At .28, Klein was 12th and John Klanac finished 15th at .25. As a team, Ohio State finished as the conference leader in aces per game at 1.82 and in attack percentage at .283. The Buckeyes finished second in kills at 14.91 and digs at 10.39 per game. Ohio State was third in blocking at 3.16 and assists at 13.63 per game. Defensively, the Buckeyes were the conference leader in kills at 12.41 and in attack percentage at .185. OSU finished second in aces at 1.07 and in assists at 11.87 per game. Ohio State was fifth in digs at 9.50 per game and was sixth in blocking at 2.77 per game.
HEAD COACH PETE HANSON
Pete Hanson is in his 24th season at Ohio State. He has a 477-262 record with the Buckeyes and has 11 Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association Championships. Named the MIVA Coach of the Year eight times, including 2008, he was the American Volleyball Coaches Association National Coach of the Year in 2000 when OSU was the NCAA National Championship runner-up. Hanson was also the 1998 Volleyball Magazine Coach of the Year. His teams have advanced to the NCAA Championships seven times including back-to-back appearances in 2000 (runner-up) and 2001 (semifinalist).
BUCKEYES RECEIVE MIVA ALL-CONFERENCE HONORS
Setter Daniel Mathews was voted the Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association Player of the Year by a vote of the seven league coaches. Buckeye coach Pete Hanson was selected the MIVA Coach of the Year as five Ohio State athletes were named to the MIVA all-conference teams. Joining Mathews on the All-MIVA First Team All-Conference team are outside hitters Robbie Klein and Brett Versen. Buckeyes named to the second team include libero Conor Martin and middle hitter Ben Spurlock.
Mathews guided Ohio State to an 11-1 MIVA record in winning a second consecutive regular-season championship. He averaged 12.13 assists per game in league matches ranking fourth in the conference. Mathews ranked 10th in aces per game at .36, fifth in digs at 1.76 and 10th in blocking at 1.04 per game. He is a three-time first team all-conference selection and was a second team selection and the MIVA Freshman of the Year in 2005. He is the fifth player to be honored twice in the conference as the player of the year. Previous two-time winners include Aldis Berzins (1977-78) from Ohio State, Craig Sherman (1980 at Kellogg Community College, 1981 at Ohio State), Lloy Ball (1993-94) from IPFW, Edwardo Ferraz (1996-97) from Ball State and Victor Rivera (1998-99) from Lewis.
Hanson earns his eighth MIVA Coach of the Year honor after coaching the Buckeyes to the 2008 regular-season championship. Ohio State has won 11 conference championships with Hanson as head coach and has won six MIVA tournament championships in his 24 years with Ohio State.
Klein, a second team all-conference selection in 2007, finished second in kills per game at 3.96 in conference play. He was third in points at 4.54, 12th in aces at .28 and 18th in digs at 1.46 per game. Klein is ranked 19th in hitting percentage at .248.
Versen posted a 4.50 points per game average to rank fifth in the conference. He was seventh in kills at 3.66, tied for seventh in aces at .36, 16th in blocks at .84 and 20th in digs at 1.43. Versen is ranked 16th in hitting percentage at .264.
Martin, a second team all-conference selection in 2007, finished conference play ranked third in digs per game at 2.59. He had a .963 reception percentage in league play handling 285 of 296 attempts.
Spurlock ranked second in the conference in hitting percentage at .455 and ranked fifth in blocks per game with a 1.24 average.
OHIO STATE HAS 14 PLAYERS NAMED TO THE MIVA ALL-ACADEMIC TEAM
The Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association has recognized 14 Ohio State men’s volleyball players who have been named to the MIVA Academic All-Conference Team. To be eligible, athletes must have achieved at least a career 3.00 grade point average on a 4.0 scale after the completion of the fall semester at their respective institutions. A total of 62 players were honored by the conference.
Four Buckeyes are being honored for the fourth time including John Albertson (Sr.-Jr., Ballwin, Mo.), Conor Martin, Daniel Mathews and Brett Versen. Receiving their second Academic All-Conference honors are Kevin Heine, Steven Kehoe (So.-Fr., Cincinnati, Ohio), Brian Kues (So., Cincinnati, Ohio), Ted Schoenfeldt, Jason Tobkin and Ryan Versen (So., Centerville, Ohio). First-year honorees include Dan Brandel (Fr., Loveland, Ohio), Samer ElShafei (Fr., Lisle, Ill.), Blake McCormick (Fr., Dublin, Ohio) and Mark Wimmers (Jr.-So., Cincinnati, Ohio).
KLEIN NAMED THE MIVA PLAYER OF THE WEEK – April 14
Robbie Klein was been named the MIVA Player of the Week for his play in wins at IPFW and at home against No. 8 Ball State and Mercyhurst. Klein helped Ohio State to three conference wins in five days in winning the outright MIVA Championship. In the rescheduled match at IPFW, OSU won 3-2 to stay in the hunt for the title. Klein posted 20 points against the Mastodons, recording 19 kills while hitting .237.He added eight digs, one ace serve, two assists and handled 33 of 36 reception attempts. Tied at 11 in the fifth game, Klein had kills for three of OSU’s final four points including the match winner (fourth point was an IPFW error). Against then-8th-ranked Ball State, Klein’s match-high 26.5 points helped OSU secure at least a share of the MIVA Championship in the 3-1 victory. He recorded 23 kills in the match while hitting .259. Klein added seven digs, one assist block, three ace serves, one assist and handled 26 reception attempts without an error. His 26.5 points is his season high. Behind, 1-0 in the match, Klein scored the final three points on kills in game two to win, 30-27, and tie the match at one game each. Klein had 13.5 points in the 3-0 win over Mercyhurst to secure the outright MIVA Championship. He recorded 10 kills while hitting .286. Klein added four digs, three assist blocks, two ace serves and handled 10 reception attempts.
VERSEN NAMED MIVA PLAYER OF THE WEEK – March 31
Brett Versen was named the Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association Player of the Week for his play against top-ranked Penn State and St. Francis. Versen had back-to-back matches with 20 or more points last week. In the 3-1 loss at Penn State, he had a team-high 20 points recording 15 kills, three ace serves, a solo block and two assist blocks. He added four digs while hitting .375. Versen had 23 points in the 3-1 win at St. Francis. He had a co-match-high 21 kills adding four assist blocks and eight digs while hitting .289. For the two matches, Versen averaged 5.38 points, 4.50 kills, 1.50 digs, .88 blocks and .38 aces per game while hitting .325. This is the second time this season Versen has been named the player of the week.
KLEIN NAMED THE MIVA PLAYER OF THE WEEK – March 25
Robbie Klein was named the Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association Player of the Week for his play against Loyola-Chicago and No. 15 Lewis. Klein had a match-high 20.5 points in the 3-1 (28-30, 30-28, 30-28, 30-26) win at Loyola-Chicago with 17 kills, an ace serve and five assist blocks. He hit .238 adding an assist and seven digs. With the match tied at 1-1 in games and the score tied at 27, a Klein kill gave OSU its first lead of the game at 28-27. The Ramblers tied the game at 28 but back-to-back kills from Klein gave the Buckeyes a 30-28 game three victory. In the 3-0 (30-27, 30-23, 30-22) win at No. 15 Lewis, Klein had 11.5 points with 10 kills, one ace serve and an assist block. He hit .231 for the match, adding an assist and five digs. For the two matches, Klein averaged 4.57 points, 3.86 kills, 1.71 digs and .86 blocks per game. He handled 43 of 46 reception attempts (.935).
MATHEWS NAMED THE MIVA PLAYER OF THE WEEK – March 11
Daniel Mathews was named the Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association Player of the Week for his play last week. He recorded his second double-double of the season and eighth of his career with 43 assists and a season-high 11 digs in the 3-1 (28-30, 30-24, 30-23, 30-20) win at Mercyhurst. Mathews added four total blocks (one solo and three assists), two ace serves and a kill in the match. His previous dig high this season was nine in two matches.
VERSEN NAMED THE MIVA PLAYER OF THE WEEK – Feb. 5
Brett Versen was named the MIVA Player of the Week as he played a key role in conference home victories over Lewis 3-0 (32-30, 30-25, 30-27) and No. 14 Loyola-Chicago 3-2 (30-26, 27-30, 30-16, 28-30, 15-13) to keep the seventh-ranked, 6-1 Buckeyes undefeated in league play at 5-0. Versen had a career-high 24.5 points in the win over Lewis, tying his career high of 20 kills and adding a season-high nine digs. He hit .368 in the match, added three ace serves, a solo block and an assist block. He then produced 24 points in the victory over then No. 14-Loyola-Chicago, recording 19 kills while hitting .417. He tied his career high of four ace serves while adding three digs and two assist blocks. Versen had three kills and an ace serve in the fifth game against the Ramblers and had the match-winning kill for the victory.
OHIO STATE PICKED SECOND IN THE 2008 MIVA PRESEASON POLL
Ohio State, the 2007 Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association regular season champion, has been picked to finish second in the conference by a vote of the league coaches. The Buckeyes received 40 points and three first-place votes. IPFW, the 2007 MIVA Tournament Champion and NCAA Tournament finalist was picked to finish first receiving 44 points and four first-place votes. Lewis was picked to finish third (34 points), Loyola-Chicago fourth (33) and Ball State fifth (24). Rounding out the voting was Quincy at sixth (13) and Mercyhurst at seventh (8).
MATHEWS AND KLEIN NAMED TO 2008 MIVA PRESEASON TEAM
Ohio State had two players named to the 2008 Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association Preseason All-Conference Team. The selections, voted by the league coaches, were setter Daniel Mathews and outside hitter Robbie Klein.
Mathews, a 2007 American Volleyball Coaches Association first team All-American and a two-time first team All-MIVA selection averaged 12.53 assists per game last season in conference play. He averaged .79 blocks, .91 digs, .42 aces and .63 kills per game while hitting .308.
Klein was a second team All-MIVA selection last season. He averaged 3.28 kills, .19 assists, .33 aces, 1.37 digs and .72 blocks per game while hitting .307.
Also named to the team were middle attacker Matt McCarthy and libero Ian Peckler of Ball State, outside hitters C. J. Macias and Brock Ulrich and middle hitter Josh Stewart of IPFW, opposite Ian Anderson and outside hitter Joe Guntli of Loyola-Chicago and outside hitter Jared Dayton of Lewis.
DID YOU KNOW…
Ohio State has an 20-7 overall record and won the Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association regular season championship with an 11-1 record.
This is the 41st season of men’s volleyball at Ohio State with a winning record in 37 seasons. It marks the 27th season that the Buckeyes have won 20 or more matches.
The Buckeyes won their 20th regular season championship in 2008 finishing, 11-1.
In the seven losses this season, Ohio State fell twice to Penn State and Long Beach State while splitting series with George Mason, Ball State and UC Irvine.
Ohio State had five players earn MIVA All-Conference honors with Robbie Klein, Daniel Mathews and Brett Versen named to the first team and Conor Martin and Ben Spurlock selected to the season team.
Buckeye Daniel Mathews was named the MIVA Player of the year for the second year in a row. He becomes the sixth player to win player of the year honors twice.
Coach Pete Hanson was named the MIVA Coach of the Year for the eighth time in his career. He was also the coach of the year in 2007. He has won 11 MIVA regular season championships in his 24 years with the Buckeyes and has won eight MIVA Tournaments.
Ohio State has used six different starting lineups this season with no one lineup being used more than nine times.
Only Brett Versen, Robbie Klein and Daniel Mathews has started every match this season.
Ohio State returns to the Bren Events Center at UC Irvine for the second time this season. The Buckeyes split a two-match series with the Anteaters, Feb. 29-March 1.
A year ago UC Irvine came to Columbus for two exhibition matches, Dec. 16-17. The Anteaters returned to Columbus the following May to play and win the NCAA Championship in St. John Arena.
Nine players have started matches this season.