April 5, 2012
COLUMBUS, Ohio – The No. 8/10 Ohio State men’s volleyball team opened its two-match series with MIVA opponent Grand Canyon Thursday night and outlasted the Antelopes for a 3-2 (22-25, 25-14, 26-24, 25-23, 15-7) win.
Ohio State improved to 17-8 overall and 7-3 in the MIVA in the win, while Grand Canyon dropped to 15-13 and 5-4 in the league.
Senior Shawn Sangrey tallied his fifth double-double of the season, having a match-high 24 kills with 10 digs. The Columbia, Pa., product also added five block assists on the night. Seniors Anthony Hock and Mik Berzins each had double-digit digs for the Buckeyes, totaling 13 and 10, respectively.
Ben Ponnet led Grand Canyon with 17 kills and 14 digs. Setter Keith Smith had a match-high 55 assists and added 14 digs, while libero Trent Bruns had a match-best 15 digs. Jordon Tarantino finished with 17 kills and Jared Goldberg added 10.
The teams exchanged points and runs to start the match before GCU was able to pull ahead at 12-9. At that point, Berzins triggered a four-point Buckeye run to give Ohio State a one-point lead at 13-12. OSU went ahead three at 17-14, but the `Lopes battled back to lock the set at 18-18. The two teams went back and forth until, tied at 22 apiece, GCU put together a three-point run to take the set, 25-22.
At 3-3 in set two, the Buckeyes capitalized on two GCU attack errors and kills by Sangrey and Berzins for a 7-3 advantage. Ohio State put together another big run highlighted by back-to-back-to-back blocks for a 14-6 lead. The Buckeyes held on to its big lead and won the set, 25-14.
Set three opened with an early Ohio State lead at 6-4 before the `Lopes locked the score at seven apiece. Two-straight Sangrey kills gave the home squad a 10-7 lead, but GCU came back again to tie it at 12-12. Tied at 17 apiece, GCU put together a two-point run for a 19-17 lead to force an Ohio State time. The `Lopes faced set point at 24-21, but the Buckeyes weren’t finished. Three-straight GCU attack errors gave OSU set point at 25-24 and a Berzins/Overman block gave the Buckeyes the set at 26-24.
Grand Canyon took a 4-2 quick lead in set four and held on to its advantage throughout the early parts of the set. A kill by Nick Gibson brought the Buckeyes within one at 10-9 and a kill by Overman pushed OSU ahead at 11-10. Ohio State went ahead by as much as three at 19-16 before GCU battled back to tie the set at 19. Another GCU run gave the visitors a two-point advantage and the `Lopes forced a deciding set with a 25-23 win.
GCU came out with another quick lead, going up 4-2. A Sangrey kill triggered a six-point Buckeye run for an 8-4 advantage and a Berzins kill set up the winning rally for Ohio State. The OSU’s final six-point run was highlighted by four blocks, including the match-winning point at 15-7.
The two squads return to St. John Arena Friday for another 7 p.m. ET match. Admission is free.