COLUMBUS, Ohio The 14th-ranked Ohio State (2-4) men’s volleyball team held off a late St. Francis (3-1) rally to win, 3-2 (30-20, 33-31, 28-30, 26-30, 15-12) Sunday afternoon in DeGol Arena. Ohio State’s Robbie Klein posted a team-high 22.5 points for the Buckeyes. He had a team-high 21 kills, an ace serve and one assist block. Klein was one of five Buckeyes to score double-figure points in the match. Jordan Varee scored a match-high 28.5 points for St. Francis with 26 kills, an ace serve and three assist blocks.

Ohio State opened game one with two Klein kills and a Shawn Sangrey ace serve for a 3-0 lead. A Varee kill made it 3-1. Ohio State, with a Ben Spurlock kill and a Steven Kehoe-Spurlock block made it 5-1 Buckeyes. OSU never trailed in the game, reaching game point at 29-19 with a Ted Schoenfeldt kill. St. Francis, with a Patrick McManamon-Alex Fortney block, stopped the point at 29-20. A Sangrey kill ended the game at 30-20 for Ohio State. The Buckeyes hit .385 for the game to .071 for the Red Flash.

Game two saw St. Francis open a 4-0 lead. Kills from Nick Rivett and Varee, a Pete Freyer-Shane Conley block and an OSU error made up the run. At 19-17, St. Francis, two Spurlock kills tied the game at 19. At 21-all, a Varee kill and a Fortney ace serve made it 23-21 Red Flash. At 25-23, a kill from Kevin Heine and a Red Flash error tied the game at 25. Four ties later at 28-all, a Buckeye error made it 29-28 with St. Francis serving game point. Spurlock, with a kill, stopped the game point, tying the score at 29. A Schoenfeldt kill made it 30-29, OSU, with a Buckeye game point. A Fortney kill stopped the game point, tying the game at 30. Another Schoenfeldt kill made it 31-30 for OSU’s second game point. St. Francis, with a Fortney-McManamon block stopped the point to tie the game at 31. A Sangrey kill made it 32-31 Ohio State for their third game point. A Red Flash error ended the game at 33-31 to give Ohio State a 2-0 lead in the match. The Buckeyes hit .400 for the game to .371 for the Red Flash.

Ohio State broke a 5-5 tie in game three with a Heine kill and a Schoenfeldt ace serve. OSU expanded the lead to four several times but at 17-13, a Rivett kill, two OSU errors and a Varee ace serve tied the game at 17. At 27-all, an OSU error and an Alex Kane-Freyer block gave St. Francis a 29-27 lead, serving game point. A Klein kill stopped the point at 29-28. St. Francis won the game with a Rivett kill, 30-28 to trail in the match, 2-1. The Red Flash hit .378 in the game to .286 for OSU.

In a close game four that saw ties at nine, 10, 16 and at 20, kills from Varee and Freyer made it 22-20 St. Francis. The Red Flash expanded their lead to three at 26-23. A Heine kill and a Schoenfeldt ace serve cut the margin to one at 26-25. Two kills from Rivett made it 28-25. A Klein kill made it 28-26. St. Francis reached game point at 29-26 with a Varee kill. A Freyer solo block ended the game at 30-26 for St. Francis to tie the match at two games each. The Red Flash hit .514 for the game to .171 for the Buckeyes.

The fifth game, tied at four, saw a St. Francis error and a Spurlock kill give Ohio State a 6-4 lead. Two OSU errors and a Spurlock kill made it 7-6, Ohio State. A Spurlock kill and a Kehoe solo block gave the Buckeyes a 9-6 lead. An OSU error and a Klein kill made it 10-7. A Varee kill cut the OSU lead to 10-8. Two Schoenfeldt kills and his ace serve opened up a 13-8 Buckeye lead. An OSU error, a Rivett kill and a McManamon-Fortney block cut the lead to two at 13-11. A Heine kill set match point at 14-11. A Varee kill stopped the match point at 14-12. Ohio State closed out the game at 15-12, with a Spurlock kill to win the match, 3-2. The Buckeyes hit .556 for the game to .357 for the Red Flash.

Ohio State hit .338 for the match to .349 for St. Francis. The Buckeyes had an 80-73 margin in kills and a 78-70 advantage in assists. OSU’s Kehoe posted a match-high 69 assists while Conley had 64 for St. Francis. The Buckeyes had an 8-3 edge in ace serves with OSU’s Schoenfeldt serving a match-high three. The Red Flash gave up 22 service errors to 19 for OSU. Defensively, the Buckeyes had a 46-41 edge in digs. OSU’s Mik Berzins posted a match-high 17 digs. At the net, St. Francis enjoyed a 15.5 to eight margin in team blocks. McManamon posted a match-high nine assist blocks for the Red Flash while OSU’s Kehoe had a team-high five with two solos and three assist blocks.

Next week Ohio State opens play in the Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association when they travel to IPFW (3-1) for a 7 p.m. match Saturday.

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