COLUMBUS, Ohio The 15th-ranked Ohio State (8-8 overall, 5-1 Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association) men’s volleyball team went the distance in defeating 14th-ranked Ball State (10-5, 4-1), 3-2 (30-25, 20-30, 30-21, 26-30, 15-12) Wednesday night in St. John Arena. OSU’s John Klanac posted a team-high 18.5 points in the match with 15 kills, two ace serves, a solo block and one assist block. Todd Chamberlain recorded a match-high 25.5 points for Ball State collecting a match-high 22 kills, a solo block and five assist blocks.

With game one tied at one, two Robbie Klein kills and a Cardinal error made it 4-1 OSU. A Chamberlain kill cut the margin to 4-2. A Ball State error, a John Albertson-Klein block and a Ted Schoenfeldt ace serve opened a 7-2 OSU lead. With Ball State trailing, 11-6, two Chamberlain kills and a Buckeye error cut the lead to 11-9. A Ball State error made it 12-9. A kill from Andy Nelson and an Ethan Pheister-J.D. Gasparovic block cut the Buckeye lead to one at 12-11. At 16-15, a Cardinal error and a Steven Kehoe-Kevin Heine block gave Ohio State an 18-15 lead. At 26-23, a Klanac kill and a Cardinal error gave Ohio State a 28-23 margin. Two Buckeye errors cut the lead to 28-25. A Heine kill set game point at 29-25. Ohio State won the game, 30-25, with a Heine-Klein block to hold a 1-0 lead in the match. The Buckeyes hit .290 for the game to .133 for Ball State.

Tied at three in game two, the Cardinals scored the next five points to open an 8-3 lead. The run began with two kills from Marcus Imwalle and one from Nelson. An Imwalle-Nelson block, a Buckeye error and a Gasparovic ace serve completed the run. Ball State held the lead, reaching game point at 29-20 with a Matt Sprague kill. Mark Termion ended the game with an ace serve for a 30-20 Cardinal win tying the match at 1-1. Ball State hit .577 for the game to .240 for Ohio State.

In game three, Ohio State broke a 2-2 tie with a Klanac kill, a Cardinal error and a Klein kill to take a 5-3 lead. At 11-8, OSU, a Cardinal error, a Klanac solo block and an Albertson-Kehoe block gave the Buckeyes a 14-8 advantage. Cardinal kills from Gasparovic and Imwalle and two OSU errors cut the OSU lead to two at 14-12. With Ohio State leading, 16-14, a Schoenfeldt kill, a Cardinal error and two ace serves from Klanac gave the Buckeyes a 20-14 lead. At 23-17, a Chamberlain kill cut the OSU lead to five. Buckeye kills from Albertson, Schoenfeldt and Klanac expanded the lead to 26-18. An OSU error and a Nelson solo block cut the lead to 26-20. A Cardinal error and a Ben Spurlock solo block put the margin at 28-20. An Imwalle kill cut the lead to 28-21. Spurlock, with a kill, set game point at 29-21. A Cardinal error ended the game, 30-21, to give Ohio State a 2-1 lead in the match. The Buckeyes hit .290 for the game to .161 for Ball State.

Leading 2-1, Ball State with three consecutive ace serves from Pheister held a 5-1 lead in game four. A Spurlock kill and a Chamberlain-Gasparovic-Imwalle block made it 6-2. A Cardinal error, a Schoenfeldt solo block and a Spurlock ace serve cut the Ball State lead to 6-5. An Imwalle kill made it 7-5. A Cardinal error and a Klein kill tied the game at seven. A Chamberlain kill made it 8-7. A Ball State error tie the game at eight. Kills from Klanac and Klein gave Ohio State a 10-8 lead. At 11-9, a kill from Nelson and a Chamberlain solo block tied the game at 11. Kills from Sprague and Chamberlain broke a 17-17 tie to give Ball State a 19-17 lead. The Cardinals held the lead and reached game point off an OSU error at 29-25. A Cardinal error made it 29-26. Ball State, with an Imwalle kill, won the game, 30-26, and tied the match a 2-2. The Cardinals hit .323 for the game to .212 for Ohio State.

Game five opened with a Chamberlain kill and a Gasparovic-Imwalle block for a 2-0 Ball State lead. A Cardinal error and a Gasparovic kill made it 3-1. Buckeye kills from Albertson and Klanac tied the game at three. Kills from Sprague and Albertson made it 4-4. Ohio State took a 6-4 lead with a kill from Spurlock and a Spurlock-Kehoe block. After a Ball State time out, kills from Matt McCarthy and Imwalle and a Cardinal error cut the Ohio State lead to one at 7-6. OSU kills from Schoenfeldt and Spurlock gave the Buckeyes a 9-6 lead. Ball State kills from Imwalle and Chamberlain and one from OSU’s Schoenfeldt cut the lead to two at 10-8. A Cardinal error and a Klein kill forced a Ball State time out at 12-8. An Imwalle kill and a Cardinal error moved the score to 13-9. A solo block from Gasparovic cut the lead to three at 13-10. Ohio State reached match point with a Klanac kill at 14-10. A Chamberlain kill and a Buckeye error stopped two match points, cutting the OSU lead to 14-12. After an Ohio State time out, a Klanac kill ended the game for Ohio State at 15-12, for a 3-2 Buckeye win. Ball State hit .438 for the game to .318 for Ohio State.

For the match, Ball State out hit Ohio State, .306 to .268. The Cardinals had a 68-65 advantage in kills and a 64-58 edge in assists. Pheister posted a match-high 57 assists for the Cardinals with OSU’s Kehoe recording 55. Ball State edged Ohio State in ace serves, 7-6. Pheister recorded a match-high five aces for the Cardinals. Ball State gave up 22 service errors to 12 for Ohio State. The Cardinals had a 40-29 margin in digs. Sharing match-high honors for Ball State was Pheister, Chamberlain and Sprague. At the net, the Cardinals held a 16-13 advantage in team blocks. Gasparovic posted a match-high nine blocks for Ball State with a solo and eight assists.

Ohio State will play their next five contests on the road starting next week playing at 7 p.m. matches at George Mason Friday, March 20 and at Rutgers-Newark Saturday, March 21.