COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State (12-13 overall, 6-10 Big Ten) women’s volleyball team lost a 3-1 (30-27, 28-30, 30-20, 30-25) decision at Northwestern (16-11, 7-9) Saturday night in Welch-Ryan Arena. Ohio State’s Katie Dull (Fr., Solon, Ohio) scored a team-high 17.5 points for the Buckeyes with 15 kills, one ace serve, one solo block and an assist block. Northwestern’s Courtnie Paulus posted a match-high 28.5 points for the Wildcats with a match-high 22 kills, four ace serves and five assist blocks.
Game one saw Northwestern break a 17-17 tie with a Brittney Aldridge kill, an Aldridge-Paulus block and a Paulus kill to open a 20-17 lead. The Wildcats reached game point at 29-27 with an Aldridge solo block. A Chelsy Hyser kill ended the game for Northwestern at 30-27. The Wildcats hit .381 for the game to .364 for the Buckeyes.
Ohio State opened game two with a 3-0 lead off kills from Kaila Calhoun (Fr., Elkhart, Ind.) and Briana McCarthy (Sr., Beaver Dam, Wis.) and an Ami Stevens (Sr., Centerburg, Ohio)-Danielle Meyer (Sr., Cincinnati, Ohio) block. Down, 9-6, the Wildcats scored three straight points to tie the game at nine. A kill from Stevens and two Northwestern errors gave Ohio State a 12-9 lead. The Buckeyes held the lead, reaching game point at 29-25 with a Dull kill. The Wildcats stopped three game points with a Paulus kill, an Aldridge-Naomi Johnson block and a Paulus ace serve to cut the lead to one at 29-28. An Anna Szerszen (So., Conflans Ste Hne, France) kill ended the game at 30-28, tying the match at one game each. Ohio State hit .136 for the game to .116 for the Wildcats.
From a 2-2 tie in game three, Northwestern scored four straight points to open a 6-2 lead. The Wildcats expanded the lead and reached game point at 29-20 with an Emma Pollert ace serve. A Wildcat block by Hyser and Lindsay Anderson closed out the game at 30-20 to give the Wildcats a 2-1 lead in the match.
After an early 2-0 Northwestern lead, the Buckeyes saw seven early ties before a Meyer-McCarthy block tied the game at 21. The Wildcats, with two Anderson kills and a Hyser-Anderson block opened a 24-21 lead. The Buckeyes cut the lead to one with a Dull kill at 25-24, but a Hyser kill, a Paulus-Hyser block and an OSU error gave the Wildcats a 28-24 lead. Dull, with a kill, cut the lead to 28-25. Hyser set game point at 29-25 with a kill. Northwestern closed out the game at 30-25 with a Paulus kill to win the match, 3-1.
The Wildcats hit .273 for the match to .193 for the Buckeyes. Northwestern had a 71-57 advantage in kills and an eight to four margin in ace serves. The Wildcats gave up 13 service errors to seven for Ohio State. Defensively, Northwestern had a 72-53 advantage in digs with Wildcat Emma Pollert recording a match-high 27. At the net, Northwestern had a 15.5 to eight margin in team blocks. Aldridge posted a match-high eight total blocks for the Wildcats with a solo and seven assists. Setter Elyse Glab recorded a match-high 63 assists in the contest for Northwestern while OSU’s McCarthy had 40.
Ohio State returns home next week to face Illinois at 7 p.m. Friday in St. John Arena. The Buckeyes continue the home stand against No. 11 Wisconsin at 8 p.m. Monday in a match that will be carried live by the Big Ten Network.