March 16, 2013

Box Score

COLUMBUS, Ohio – The No. 9 Ohio State men’s volleyball team ousted non-conference rival No. 13 Penn State, 3-0 (25-20, 25-17, 25-20), Saturday night in St. John Arena. The meeting was the third of the season between the two squads with the Buckeyes capturing the last two matches in three sets.

Ohio State (15-3) was led by its defense, finishing with 13.0 blocks and limiting the Nittany Lions to a .168 attack percentage. Senior Grayson Overman finished with a season-high eight blocks and tied a career-high with three solo blocks. Michael Henchy and Andrew Lutz had four block assists, while John Tholen and Peter Heinen had three blocks apiece. Libero Brennen Anderson picked up his 12th double-digit dig match with 10.

Offensively, the Buckeyes finished with a .478 hitting percentage, marking a season-high as a team. Lutz finished with a team-best 12 kills and notched a .478 attack percentage, while Henchy and senior Chen Levitan each had 10 kills. Henchy added two service aces in win.

Aaron Russell and Tom Comfort totaled 14 and 13 kills, respectively, to lead Penn State (14-6). Libero Connor Curry had six digs and setter Taylor Hammond finished with 29 assists.

Tied at six in the first set, a kill by Heinen followed by an Overman solo block led to an 8-6 advantage. Another Buckeye block and a Henchy kill pushed Ohio State ahead at 16-12 to force a Penn State timeout. A kill by Levitan and a Nittany Lion error set the score 21-18 and a kill by Lutz sealed a 25-20 win.

An Overman/Heinen block triggered a 3-1 Buckeye run to open set two. A kill by Henchy sent the squad on a 6-1 run to take a 13-8 lead. Errors plagued the Nittany Lions as Ohio State pushed ahead for a 20-10 advantage. A Levitan kill gave the Buckeyes set point and a Penn State error sent teams into intermission, 25-17 Ohio State.

The Buckeyes took another 3-1 lead to start the final set and a 6-2 run led to a 9-3 advantage. A kill by Tholen followed by five-straight Penn State hitting errors gave Ohio State a 15-5 lead. Coming out of a timeout, the Nittany Lions regrouped and began to inch away at the Buckeye margin, but it was a little too late as Ohio State went on to take the match with a 25-20 win.

Ohio State takes to the road for a pair of MIVA matches March 22-23. The Buckeyes open with a 7:30 p.m. ET match at Ball State in Muncie, Ind., and follows with a 7 p.m. ET match at IPFW in Fort Wayne.