COLUMBUS, Ohio The 12th-ranked Ohio State (4-5 overall) men’s volleyball team, down 2-1, rallied to send the match to a fifth game but fell short as George Mason (4-1) came away with a 3-2 (18-30, 30-27, 30-24, 24-30, 19-17) victory Friday night in St. John Arena. OSU’s John Klanac posted a career-high 21 points in the match with 18 kills, two ace serves and two assist blocks for the Buckeyes. Patriot Kyle Gramit posted a match-high 24.5 points in the match with 21 kills, three ace serves and an assist block.

Ohio State opened game one with two Kevin Heine kills, a Heine-Klanac block and a Steven Kehoe ace serve for a 4-0 lead. The Buckeyes never trailed in the game, reaching game point at 29-16 with a Shawn Sangrey-Ted Schoenfeldt block. The Patriots held off two game points, recording a Brandon McLaughlin kill at 29-17 and with an OSU error, trailed 29-18. The Buckeyes won the game, 30-18 with a Schoenfeldt kill. Ohio State hit .276 in the game to -.062 for George Mason.

The Patriots opened game two with an Erik Lanham kill and two from Gramit for a 3-0 lead. OSU responded with a Heine kill and with two George Mason errors tied the game at three. A Gramit-Lanham block and a Lanham kill gave the Patriots a 5-3 lead. With OSU trailing 7-5, kills from Schoenfeldt and Robbie Klein tied the game at seven. Two Buckeye errors and a McLaughlin block gave the Patriots a 10-7 lead. A Gramit kill and a Luke Maloney ace serve expanded the lead to five at 12-7. At 28-23, a Klanac kill, a Patriot error and a Schoenfeldt ace serve cut the lead to two at 28-26. A Buckeye error set game point at 29-26. OSU stopped the game point with a Klanac kill at 29-27. George Mason won the game, 30-27, with a Ben Nichols kill to tie the match at one game each. The Patriots hit .163 in the game to .075 for Ohio State.

George Mason opened game three with a kill and solo block by Lanham for a 2-0 lead. A Klanac kill made it 2-1. A Nichols-Lanham block, a Nichols kill and a Gramit ace serve opened a 5-1 Patriot lead. George Mason never trailed in the game, reaching game point at 29-20 off an OSU error. The Buckeyes stopped four game points starting with a Sangrey kill at 29-21. Solo blocks from Klein and Schoenfeldt made it 29-23. A Patriot error cut the margin to five at 29-24. George Mason, with a Nichols kill, won the game 30-24, and now held a 2-1 lead in the match. The Patriots hit .214 for the game to .132 for the Buckeyes.

Game four opened with kills from Sangrey and Gramit for a 1-1 tie. Buckeye kills from Sangrey and Schoenfeldt gave Ohio State a 3-1 lead. At 8-6, kills from Sangrey and Schoenfeldt gave the Buckeyes a 10-6 lead. At 12-8, a Nichols block and an OSU error cut the margin to 12-10. Kills from Klanac and Maloney made it 13-11. A Buckeye error and a Schoenfeldt kill made it 14-12. George Mason tied the game at 14 with a Maloney kill and a Ryan Kwiatkowski-McLaughlin block. Kills from Heine and Sangrey and a Patriot error returned the lead to OSU at 17-14. At 24-21, Patriot kills from Maloney and McLaughlin cut the Buckeye lead to one at 24-23. A Klanac kill and a Heine-Sangrey block made it 26-23 OSU. Kills from McLaughlin and Sangrey made it 27-24. A Gramit kill made it 27-25. Consecutive Patriot errors made it 29-25 with the Buckeyes serving game point. The Buckeyes won the game, 30-25, with a Schoenfeldt block to tie the match at two games each. Ohio State hit .324 for the game to .282 for George Mason.

In a close fifth game that saw 13 ties and three lead changes, the Buckeyes opened play with a Klein kill. With George Mason trailing, 7-5, two Gramit kill tied the game at seven. A Buckeye error gave the Patriots an 8-7 lead. A Klein kill tied the game at eight. After several ties, a Heine-Klein block gave Ohio State a 13-12 lead. The Patriots tied the game at 13 with a Kwiatkowski kill. George Mason reached match point with a Kwiatkowski solo block. Sangrey stopped the point at 14-14 with a kill. A Gramit kill set a second match point at 15-14 but Klein tied the game at 15 with a kill. A Gramit kill set the third match point at 16-15. Klein, with a kill, stopped the point at 16-16. The Patriots had their fourth match point at 17-16 with a Lanham kill. OSU stopped the point at 17-17 with a Schoenfeldt kill. A McLaughlin kill made it 18-17 for the fifth match point. Brandon Joyner ended the match with an ace serve for a 19-17 George Mason game win and a 3-2 victory in the match. The Patriots hit .370 for the game to .300 for Ohio State.

In the match, Ohio State out hit George Mason, .213 to .191. The Patriots had a 73-71 edge in kills. OSU’s Kehoe posted 60 assists in the match to 58 for GMU’s Kwiatkowski. The Patriots had a 6-5 margin in ace serves with Gramit posting a match-high three. The Patriots gave up 12 service errors to seven for OSU. The Buckeyes had a 54-49 advantage in digs with OSU’s Kehoe and Patriot Eric Lucas sharing match-high honors with 18 each. At the net, George Mason had an 18.5 to 14 advantage in team blocks. Lanham recorded a match-high eight blocks for George Mason with three solos and five assists.

Ohio State returns to the road next Saturday when they face top-ranked Penn State in University Park