Oct. 25, 2014
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Ohio State’s play was `Pretty in Pink’ Saturday night as the pink breast cancer awareness jersey-clad Buckeyes eradicated the Michigan Wolverines (10-10, 5-5) in three sets: 25-21, 25-21, 25-19. The #20 Buckeyes improved to 16-6 overall and 7-3 in Big Ten action. The 7-3 record in the first half of the conference season is the program’s best since 2005.
Saturday’s sweep also marks the 49th victory over Michigan in 70 all-time meetings (49-21). After a wild win filled with ups and downs Friday night versus Michigan State, the Buckeyes steadied the ship versus Michigan. Ohio State attacked .273 in the second stanza, sandwiched by hitting percentages of .303 in the first and third sets. On the defensive side, the Bucks dug 14, 13 and 13 balls in the straight-sets victory.
Senior setter Taylor Sherwin guided the consistent attack, dishing out 37 kills with a dozen going to both Erin Sekinger and Luisa Schirmer. It was a complete team effort defensively as all nine Buckeyes which played recorded at least one dig or one block. Valeria León led the way in digs with 11 while Andrea Kacsits and Taylor Sandbothe both got in on a match-high four blocks.
Sandbothe was a part of set-clinching blocks in the first two frames. She paired up with Schirmer to stuff Michigan’s Abby Cole for the 25th point of the opening set. Sandbothe was then joined by Elizabeth Campbell for the final blow of set number two, rejecting Cole once again. Schirmer went off in set number two, bouncing six of 11 errorless swings.
Sekinger took care of six kills in the next set, needing just 10 errorless swings to do so. The Buckeyes suffocated Michigan to a .121 attacking efficiency, racking up 13 digs in the set.
Kacsits made an impact in her first start of the season after coming back from a broken hand suffered two days before the season started. The junior from Rockford, Mich., inflicted four blocks and two kills upon her native state school.
Next up for the Scarlet and Gray is a home-and-home week against the defending national champion Nittany Lions of Penn State. Ohio State travels to Happy Valley Tuesday night (Oct. 28) before hosting PSU Friday (Oct. 31) inside St. John Arena.