March 23, 2014

Box Score

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COLUMBUS, Ohio – The No. 15 Ohio State men’s volleyball team fell to No. 12 Ball State, 3-1 (26-28, 25-22, 22-25, 20-25), Sunday in Muncie, Ind. The Buckeyes dropped to 8-13 overall and 4-6 in MIVA play.

Three Buckeyes in Andrew Lutz, Michael Henchy and Christy Blough totaled double-doubles in the match. Lutz led all attackers with 19 kills and added 10 digs for his second double-double of the season. Henchy picked up his third double-double with 13 kills and 11 digs, while Blough’s 49 assists and 11 digs made for his second double-double this year.

Freshman Miles Johnson totaled 13 kills and eight digs for the Buckeyes and libero Danny Baker finished with seven digs. Middle blocker Driss Guessous led the team with six blocks (2s, 4a).

Ball State’s (17-5, 6-2) Kevin Owens had a team-best 16 kills, while Marcin Niemczewski had 13 kills and 15 digs. Matt Sutherland finished with 14 kills and libero David Vandermeer totaled 12 digs.

After falling behind 4-0 in set one, the Buckeyes battled back to cut the Ball State lead at 5-4 with an ace from Johnson. Cardinal errors followed by a solo block and a kill from Guessous gave Ohio State a 12-10 advantage. Ball State servers gave the home team a 17-15 lead before a five-point Buckeye run pushed OSU ahead at 22-19. Kills by Johnson and Blough brought Ohio State to set point at 24-21, but the Cardinals closed out the set on a 7-2 run to win 28-26.

Ball State used a 5-1 run to take an 11-9 advantage to start the second set and force a Buckeye timeout. Ohio State quickly responded with a run to regain the lead at 12-11 and a kill from Lutz with a service ace by Alex Judkins pushed the Buckeyes up 17-15. The Cardinals rallied late to tie the set at 22, but back-to-back kills from Lutz and a BSU error gave Ohio State a 25-22 win.

A pair of small runs led to a 5-3 Buckeye lead to start the third. Ball State came back with a 7-2 run to grab a 15-11 lead, but Cardinal errors brought OSU within one at 17-16. Kills from Johnson and Henchy tied the set at 20 before BSU attackers came alive to win the set, 25-22.

The Cardinals captured a 12-6 lead in set four, forcing Ohio State to use both timeouts early in the set. A kill by Henchy followed by a Henchy/Shawn Herron block and a Blough service ace cut the Ball State lead at 15-12 and back-to-back kills from Johnson set the score 18-15 BSU. The teams exchanged points to close out the set as the Cardinals sealed the match with a 25-20 win.

Ohio State returns to St. John Arena next weekend for a pair of MIVA matches, March 28-29. The Buckeyes face Quincy in a 7 p.m. ET match Friday and follow with another 7 p.m. ET match vs. Lindenwood Saturday. Admission is free for both matches.