Sept. 16, 2016
MUNCIE, Ind. — The No. 19 Ohio State University women’s volleyball team needed just 135 minutes to secure a pair of victories on Friday (Sept. 16), running its season record to 9-2 overall. The Buckeyes outscored Valparaiso (6-6) and UNCG (4-7) by a combined 56 points, allowing the opposition to record no more than 20 points in any set. Ohio State dominated the doubleheader to the tune of a .394 team hitting percentage for the day while limiting the Crusaders and Spartans to attacking rates of .077 and .076, respectively.
The 2016 Ball State Active Ankle Challenge title is one win away for Ohio State, facing host Ball State Saturday (Sept. 17) evening at approximately 6 p.m. ET.
Taylor Sandbothe performed sensationally throughout the double dip, putting away 5.33 kills per set at a .540 hitting rate. Audra Appold and Luisa Schirmer each attacked north of .370 with 19 kills (3.17/set) apiece to flank Sandbothe’s crushing performance from the middle. Taylor Hughes handed out a dozen assists per set and took care of 10 kills on her own. The sophomore setter also matched Valeria León with a team-high three service aces.
Speaking of León, the Buckeye libero led the defensive effort by digging 22 balls (3.67/set). Ohio State posting 13 team blocks, spread out among six different Buckeyes.
Valparaiso acted as the Buckeyes first adversary of the day, battling Ohio State to a 13-13 stalemate midway through the opening set. A Crusader service ace would follow, however, allowing the Buckeyes to start a six-point run fueled by a pair of Madison Smeathers kills to ultimately push OSU ahead for good at 19-13. Ohio State would tack on two more tallies to its margin by set’s end, resulting in a 25-17 final ledger.
Set number two took a different route to ultimately reach the same destination. Ohio State raced out to an early 6-2 edge and never looked back en route to a lopsided 25-13 triumph. The Buckeyes then continued to pile it on for the third frame, blowing past Valpo, 25-18, to close the door.
Sandbothe lifted her game to the next level in the nightcap versus UNCG, bouncing 18 kills on 26 swings with just two errors (.615). Appold (8-0-21), Kylie Randall (4-0-8) and Luisa Schirmer (7-0-14) were extremely efficient as well, combining for 19 terminations on a whopping 43 errorless attempts. Appold chipped in 12.5 total points on eight kills, three solo blocks, a block assist and ace; trailing only Sandbothe’s 21 points (18 kills, two block assists, a solo block and ace).
Camry Halm toed the service stripe for the final four points of Ohio State’s 25-20 victory to open the UNCG match, including the final three rallies which all ended via the Sandbothe kill. The last five plays of the set read: Kill by Sandbothe, Kill by Schirmer, Kill by Sandbothe, Kill by Sandbothe and Kill by Sandbothe (all assisted from Hughes).
Ohio State faced a deficit for the final time of the night at 3-2 in the second stanza. The Buckeyes grasped 23 of the next 32 points to notch a 25-12 winner. The Scarlet wave continued in set number three, overpowering the Crusaders in a 25-14 clinc