COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State University men’s volleyball team (6-1) returns to the state of Pennsylvania for the second straight weekend. This time around the trip presents a Friday tilt at Saint Francis (2-4) followed by Saturday night’s clash with the seventh-ranked Nittany Lions of Penn State (4-2). Both matches are set for 7 p.m. ET starts.
HISTORY WITH THE RED FLASH
The Buckeyes own a commanding 34-2 edge in the all-time series versus Saint Francis, including a 3-0 sweep (25-18, 25-20, 25-19) earlier this season in Columbus. The Red Flash earns wins in 2010 and 2019.
HISTORY WITH THE NITTANY LIONS
Penn State has built a 73-41-1 upperhand in the ledger which began in 1971, but Ohio State has found more success into recent years. The Buckeyes have been victorious in six of the last eight and eight of the most recent 11.
Ohio State is ranked top-10 nationally in two statistical categories, one offensive and one defensive. The Buckeyes are attacking .325 overall, good for eighth best among 45 D I-II teams. Ohio State also holds the ninth-highest blocks per set rate, averaging 2.57 stuffs.
Martin Lallemand leads the team with 4.16 kills per set and is slotted 20th nationally.
Four weeks into the 2020 season and Ohio State has corralled three MIVA Defensive Player of the Week awards, earned by three different Buckeyes. Martin Lallemand started the trended during the opening week before Samuel Clark and Tim Baldwin went back-to-back on Jan. 21 and 28.
FRESHMAN HAULS IN NATIONAL RECOGNITION
In addition to being named the conference’s defensive player of the week on Jan. 21, Samuel Clark also received National Freshman of the Week accolades from ‘Off the Block.’ He accumulated 10 kills, eight blocks and five digs while attacking .769 in two Buckeye victories.
TOP-15 STATUS … WAIT, WHAT HAPPENED?
The Buckeyes returned to the AVCA Coaches Poll Top-15 following their 3-0 start. Ohio State then took care of business adding two more tallies in the win column, but yet peculiarly fell out of the national rankings the next week.