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Jan. 31, 2001

COLUMBUS, Ohio – %^$The Ohio State (2-1) men’s volleyball team returns to regular season action as it travels to Ball State (2-2) Sunday, Feb. 4. The 2 p.m. Midwest Intercollegiate Volleyball Association match opens OSU defense of its 2000 regular season championship. Last week, in exhibition matches, the Buckeyes won two matches against Western Ontario. OSU defeated the Mustangs 3-0 (30-23, 30-23, 30-19) Friday evening in St. John Arena and 3-2 (30-16, 23-30, 28-30, 30-22, 15-10) Saturday night at Genoa Middle School in Westerville, Ohio.%^$

%^$OSU 12TH IN AVCA POLL, 10TH IN VBM%^$

%^$The USA TODAY/AVCA Coaches Top 15 Poll, released Jan. 30, has Ohio State ranked 12th nationally. The Buckeyes were 10th in the Volleyball Magazine poll.%^$

%^$LOOKING AT OHIO STATE%^$

%^$Ohio State is 2-1 overall winning its last regular season match against Juniata 3-0 (30-16, 30-18, 30-22). The Buckeyes opened the season with a 3-0 win at St. Francis (30-15, 30-26, 30-24) and a 1-3 loss at Penn State (32-30, 23-30, 22-30, 24-30). Chris Fash (5th-Sr., Orland Park, Ill./Lockport Township H. S.) has a team-high 36 kills (3.60 per game) with Pieter Olree (Sr., Reading, Pa./Exeter H. S.) at 39 (2.90) and Greg Lehman (5th-Sr., Galena, Ohio/Big Walnut H. S.) 28 (4.00). Todd Hill (Sr., Dublin, Ohio/Dublin Scioto H. S.) leads the team in blocks with 21 (2 solo, 19 assists) for a 2.10 per game average. Olree has a team-high 18 digs (1.80 per game) and a team-high five ace serves. Setter Mark Peckham (Fr., London, Ont./Oakridge Secondary H. S.) is averaging 10.50 assists per game. The Buckeyes are hitting .317 as a team and average 13.10 kills per game. OSU has a 3.95 blocks per game average and a 6.70 dig mark. Opponents are hitting .239 and average 13.10 kills per game. Buckeye opponents average 1.65 blocks and 7.20 digs per game%^$

%^$OSU BEGINS MIVA CROWN DEFENSE%^$

%^$Ohio State, the three-time defending Midwest Intercollegiate Volleyball Association regular season champion, begins defense of the crown Sunday at Ball State. The Buckeyes won outright titles in 1998 and 200 and shared the crown with Indiana-Purdue in 1999. Ohio State has won or shared the regular season championship in six of the last eight years.%^$

%^$FASH PRODUCES POINTS%^$

%^$With 12 kills Friday and 25 Saturday, Chris Fash had a team-high 37 kills on the weekend against Western Ontario. He had two ace serves both nights and added two solo and two assist blocks in Saturday’s five-game win over the Mustangs. For the weekend, Fash hit .391 which included a .429 (27 kill, 7 errors, 29 attempts) in the five-game victory. In the regular season, he is second on the team in kills per game (3.60) and is second in blocking at 1.30 (1-12).%^$

%^$OLREE POST DOUBLE-FIGURE KILLS%^$

%^$A match-high 13 kills Friday and 18 kills Saturday were Pieter Olree’s contribution to OSU’s exhibition wins over Western Ontario. He also produced three ace serves, three digs and an assist block Friday and added six digs, two assist blocks and an ace Saturday. Olree had seven kills in eight attempts in Saturday’s fourth game as the Buckeyes rallied to defeat the Mustangs in five games. Olree is the team leader in digs in the regular season with a 1.80 per game mark.%^$

%^$GREG LEHMAN RETURNS TO LINEUP%^$

%^$After missing the Juniata match with an ankle sprain, Greg Lehman returned to the lineup against Western Ontario. Lehman had eight kills and hit .500 in Friday’s match. He produced 16 kills (.323), seven digs, six assist blocks and three aces in Saturday’s 3-2 win. In the regular season Lehman leads the squad with a 4.00 kills per game mark.%^$

%^$HILL PROVIDES DEFENSE AT NET%^$

%^$Todd Hill continues to be productive at the net for the Buckeyes. He had eight assist blocks in each match last weekend for OSU. He added four kills and an ace serve Friday and five kills, two digs and an ace Saturday. In the three regular season matches, Hill is averaging 2.10 blocks (2-19) per game and is hitting .600 (17-2-25).%^$

%^$PEDERSEN TOP WEEKEND HITTER%^$

%^$With a combined .684 hitting percentage for the weekend, Adam Pedersen (Fr., Muskego, Wis./Muskego H. S.) was the top hitter for Ohio State in the weekend sweep of Western Ontario. Pedersen hit .500 (6-1-10) Friday and .889 (8-0-9) Saturday. He added five assist blocks, an ace serve and a dig in Saturday’s match. In regular season matches, Pedersen is hitting .400 (8-2-15) and is averaging 1.10 blocks (4-7) per game.%^$

%^$PECKHAM DIRECTS OFFENSE%^$

%^$With 43 assists Friday and 63 Saturday, Mark Peckham directed OSU to two wins over Western Ontario last weekend. He also contributed six assist blocks, three digs and two ace serves in Friday’s 3-0 win and added six assist blocks, six digs and an ace serve Saturday in the 3-2 victory. In the regular season, Peckham is averaging 10.60 assists, 1.10 digs and .80 blocks per game.%^$

%^$TRANTOW BACK AT LIBERO%^$

%^$With the return of Mark Lehman to the lineup, Tom Trantow (Jr., River Forest, Ill./Oak Park-River Forest H. S.) returned to the libero position for most of the Western Ontario series. In Friday’s match he played the first two games at the libero position recording three digs. He moved to outside hitter in game three and had three assist blocks, one dig and a kill. Trantow had six digs in Saturday’s win over the Mustangs.%^$

%^$LOOKING AT BALL STATE%^$

%^$The Cardinals of Ball State are 2-2 on the season and are coming off a 3-0 (30-13, 30-20, 41-39) win over Tri-State at home. Ball State defeated UC-Santa Cruz 3-1 (30-26, 30-24, 32-24, 30-20) and lost to Pacific 2-3 (24-30, 30-26, 25-30, 30-28, 12-15) and Stanford 0-3 (18-30, 25-30, 23-30) on a road trip out West. Kyle Weindel has a team-high average of 3.40 kills per game with Tom Tegethoff second at 2.53. Matt Denmark is the squad’s top blocker averaging 1.08 blocks per game while Jary Delagdo is the team leader in digs with a 2.22 per game average. Keith Schunzel runs the offense and averages 12.73 per game. Ball State is hitting .279 as a team and averages 15.20 kills per game. They average 2.70 blocks and 10.20 digs per game. Opponents are hitting .242 and average 14.00 kill per game. BSU opponents average 1.97 blocks and 7.87 digs per game.%^$

%^$THE BALL STATE SERIES%^$

%^$The series with Ball State is tied at 68 wins each. Ohio State has won the last eight meetings with the Cardinals. In matches played at Ball State, the Cardinals have a 27-23 advantage. OSU has won the last three matches played in Muncie. Last season Ohio State won at Ball State (Jan. 20) 3-0 (15-7, 16-14, 15-10) and at Ohio State (April 8) 3-0 (15-6, 15-13, 15-3). The Buckeyes also defeated Ball State, in Columbus, (April 28) 3-0 (15-8, 15-11, 16-14) in the semifinals of the Midwest Intercollegiate Volleyball Association Tournament.%^$

%^$TWO PAIRS OF BROTHERS%^$

%^$The Buckeyes have two pairs of brothers on the squad this season. Greg and Mark Lehman (So. Galena, Ohio/Big Walnut H. S.) have been playing together for OSU since last season. The other brother combination is Chris and Tim Fash (Fr., Orland Park, Ill./Lockport Township H. S.).%^$

%^$BUCKEYES PICKED TO REPEAT IN MIVA%^$

%^$By a vote of the conference coaches, Ohio State has been picked as the preseason favorite to win the MIVA championship. The teams were ranked as follows: Ohio State, Ball State, Lewis, Quincy, Loyola, Indiana-Purdue, Mercyhurst, Clarke and Findlay.%^$

%^$THREE NAMED PRESEASON ALL-MIVA%^$

%^$Chris Fash and Pieter Olree have been selected by a vote of the MIVA coaches to the preseason first team all-conference squad. Greg Lehman was named to the third team.%^$

%^$2001 Midwest Intercollegiate Volleyball Association%^$

%^$

%^$Pre Season All Conference Selections%^$as voted on by Conference Coaches%^$

%^$First Team Pre Season All Conference%^$Chris Fash, Ohio State University%^$Jeff Ptak, Indiana Purdue Ft. Wayne%^$Rob Steinkuehler, Quincy University%^$Doug Market, Ball State University%^$Pieter Olree, Ohio State University%^$Jorge Alifonso, Lewis University%^$

%^$Second Team Pre Season All Conference%^$Shane Davis, Loyola University%^$Paul Aviles, Lewis University%^$Matt Denmark, Ball State University%^$Angel Ruiz, Indiana Purdue Ft. Wayne%^$Justin Schnor, Loyola University%^$Matt Tamborino, Mercyhurst College%^$

%^$Third Team Pre Season All Conference%^$James Milkert, Quincy University%^$Tom Tegethoff, Ball State University%^$Greg Lehman, Ohio State University%^$Fernando Barretto, Quincy University%^$Dan Haas, Loyola University%^$Bill McNally, Clarke College%^$

%^$%^$SAME GAME, DIFFERENT FORMAT%^$

%^$The 2001 season will bring a new look to men’s collegiate volleyball. Adapting a variation of the international rules, collegiate volleyball will play all rally scoring (point per serve, no sideouts) games this season. The best three of five games will have games one to four to 30 points (25 in international play) with game five to 15. The use of the libero (a designated backrow player) will be expanded to allow a different player to be designated prior to each game. A serve that touches the net and goes into the opponent’s court is a live ball and must be played while balls hit out-of-bounds past the net may be pursued and returned to one’s court and then played over the net.%^$

%^$HEAD COACH PETE HANSON%^$

%^$In his 17th year at Ohio State, Pete Hanson has put together one of the top men’s volleyball teams in the country. Last season his squad won its sixth Midwest Intercollegiate Volleyball Association championship in the last eight years. That squad advanced to the NCAA Championship match before losing to UCLA. For his team’s efforts, Hanson was named the American Volleyball Coaches Association Coach of the Year. The 1998 team, ranked second in the country in the latter stages of the season, finished sixth in the USA TODAY/AVCA Coaches Poll. They also were honored as the top team in the final regular season Volleyball Magazine Poll. That magazine honored Hanson as the Coach of the Year for his 25-2 season and the MIVA regular-season championship.%^$

%^$Hanson, in his 18th season, has a career record of 324-210 (.607) and is 310-198 (.610) in his 17-year tenure with the Buckeyes. His squads have won eight MIVA championships and made four NCAA tournament appearances. Hanson has been named the MIVA Coach of the Year five times including the 2000 season.%^$

%^$UPCOMING MATCHES%^$

%^$Ohio State continues on the road next week with MIVA conference matches at Loyola-Chicago and Quincy. OSU travels to Loyola-Chicago Friday, Feb. 9 and to Quincy Saturday, Feb. 10. Both matches begin at 7 p.m.%^$

%^$

%^$MIVA Standings%^$

%^$Jan. 29, 2001%^$ Conference Overall%^$Mercyhurst 1-0 1.000 1-2 .333%^$Loyola-Chicago – – 3-0 1.000%^$Clarke – – 2-0 1.000%^$Quincy – – 2-0 1.000%^$Ohio State – – 2-1 .667%^$Ball State – – 2-2 .500%^$Indiana-Purdue – – 1-1 .500%^$Lewis – – 1-3 .250%^$Findlay 0-1 .000 1-2 .333%^$

%^$

%^$USA Today/AVCA Coaches Poll%^$

%^$

%^$Jan. 30, 2001 – No. 3%^$

%^$Rank School Total 2001 Last%^$(First Place Votes) Points Record Week%^$ 1 Long Beach State (13) 236 4-0 1%^$ 4 Stanford (3) 226 5-0 4%^$ 5 Pepperdine 191 5-1 5%^$ 6 UCLA 176 4-3 6%^$ 2 UC-Santa Barbara 173 3-1 2%^$ 3 Southern California 165 3-1 3%^$ 7 Hawai’i 156 5-1 7%^$ 8 Brigham Young 146 3-0 8%^$ 9 Penn State 107 2-2 9%^$10 Lewis 74 1-3 10%^$11 Cal State Northridge 60 3-5 11%^$13 Ohio State 56 2-1 13%^$12 Pacific 55 2-3 12%^$14 UC Irvine 33 1-5 NR%^$15 Ball State 31 2-2 15%^$

%^$Others receiving votes: Concordia (21),%^$Loyola-Chicago (7), Quincy (5), Indiana-Purdue (2).%^$

%^$

%^$Volleyball Magazine Poll%^$

%^$Jan. 29, 2001 – No. 2%^$

%^$Rank School 2001 Last%^$ Record Week%^$ 1 Long Beach State 4-0 1%^$ 2 Stanford 5-0 2%^$ 3 Pepperdine 5-1 3%^$ 4 Brigham Young 3-0 8%^$ 5 UC Santa Barbara 3-1 4%^$ 6 UCLA 4-3 6%^$ 7 Hawai’i 5-1 7%^$ 8 Southern California 6-3 5%^$ 9 Penn State 2-2 9%^$10 Ohio State 2-1 10%^$

%^$Others: Loyola-Chicago (3-0), Concordia (4-0),%^$Cal State Northridge (3-5), Pacific (2-3),%^$Lewis (1-3), Ball State (2-2)%^$