January 4, 2019

New Year Brings Same 🔥🔥🔥 Offensive Numbers


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COLUMBUS, Ohio – The NCAA’s leader in assists per set a season ago, Sanil Thomas, picked up where he left off by dishing out nearly a dozen assists per set in the 2019 season opener. Thomas guided the No. 8 Buckeyes (1-0) to a .455 team hitting percentage in the 25-17, 25-18, 25-15 sweep over the University of Charleston (0-1) with 35 assists.


Four different Buckeyes recorded seven or more kills while attacking .500 or better. Redshirt sophomore Jake Hanes paced the squad in both quantity (13 kills) and quality (.611). Martin Lallemand bounced 10 kills at a .500 swing rate while Reese Devilbiss (.500) and Blake Leeson (.545) each registered seven kills.

Ohio State’s aggressive approach at the service stripe also remains unchanged one match into the ’19 campaign as the Buckeyes ripped 10 aces.

Aaron Samarin nearly matched the Golden Eagles team dig total on his own. The Buckeye libero dug 10 balls compared to just a dozen for the entire Charleston squad.

Thirteen Buckeyes saw action in the contest.

SET 1:  The Buckeyes shook off a sluggish start to 2019. After falling behind 10-7 in the opening frame, Ohio State rattled of six straight to go ahead 13-10. The offense continued to roll from there, attacking a smooth .500 for the set. Hanes connected for five kills on six error-free attempts to lead the way, flanked by Leeson and Lallemand combining for seven kills on nine attempts with a lone error. Austin Gerwig, Jack Stevens and Luke Lentin all made their Buckeye debuts in the 25-17 set win.

SET 2:  The rust was eradicated for set two as Ohio State raced out to a 5-1 edge. Charleston kept it close through most of the set despite the Buckeyes continuing to post fiery offensive numbers. Lallemand bounced five more kills and Hanes tacked on four. Ohio State swung .440 (14-3-25) and took the frame by a final tally of 25-18. The last point came from the right arm of Devilbiss, smoking a serve which caromed off the UC passer and into the stands beyond the baseline.

SET 3:  It was much the same in the third with Ohio State grabbing an early lead and extending the gap as the set ensued. Kyle Skinner strolled on to the court late in the frame, striking an ace on his first serve as a Buckeye. He applied max top spin and the ball dove late to catch the baseline. A few points later it was Devilbiss sealing the deal again, 25-15, on his seventh kill of the evening.

St. John Arena reopens its doors Saturday night for another 7 p.m. home match. The Nittany Lions of Penn State visit Columbus for another chapter in the long men’s volleyball rivalry between B1G brethren.