Nov. 25, 2016
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Action spilled over into extra time in the fifth set before a victor was finally determined between Ohio State and Purdue, going in favor of the Buckeyes 19-17. The Buckeyes (19-12, 9-10 Big Ten) climbed out of a two-sets-to-one deficit by seizing the final two frames and completing the comeback (25-21, 19-25, 16-25, 25-20, 19-17) over the Boilermakers (18-13, 8-12 Big Ten).
Ohio State overcame 13 Boiler blocks on the night, rising up for a .310 team hitting percentage in the decisive fifth set. The Buckeyes made up ground from the service stripe, ripping seven aces while committing just three reception errors. Five different Buckeyes posted eight or more kills, paced by Taylor Sandbothe’s 21 terminations at a .250 attacking rate. Valeria León continued to add to her school record career digs total, piling on 19 more versus the Boilermakers. She now owns 1,728 digs since arriving on campus in 2013.
SET 1: Abby Fesl launched the serving onslaught quickly, following up an Ashley Wenz kill on the opening rally with her first of three aces in the frame. Ohio State would not relinquish its early edge for the remainder of a 25-21 triumph. Fesl’s third service stint resulted in two more aces and essentially closed the door as part of a five-point run that handed the Buckeyes a 24-17 advantage.
SET 2: Sandbothe did her best to carry Ohio State in the second stanza, putting away seven kills on 11 swings with a lone error (.545). The Herculean effort was not enough, however, as Purdue’s Danielle Cuttino matched the seven kills and was backed by an overall team attacking efficiency of .419 for the set. The Boilers’ high octane offense led to a 25-19 equalizer.
SET 3: Momentum remained on Purdue’s side of the net in the third, racing out to 10-3 cushion and rolling in a 25-16 winner.
SET 4: Ohio State regrouped at intermission, returning to the hardwood ready to put up a fight. The Boilermakers refused to back down either as the set witnessed 14 tied scores and a half dozen lead changes. Tied up 16-all, the Buckeyes strung together three consecutive points to force a PU timeout and jump on top for good. Ohio State utilized a balanced barrage, allowing for six different Buckeyes to contribute multiple kills in the 25-20 victory.
SET 5: Despite the truncated nature of a fifth set, back-and-forth drama was aplenty with seven lead swaps and 12 tied scores. Trailing 8-6 after switching sides of the net, Audra Appold stepped up and delivered a kill and ace on back-to-back points. A similar feat by Sandbothe later in the set served as the turning point. Sandbothe thwarted a Purdue match-point opportunity at 14-13 and replaced it with a match-point chance for the Scarlet & Gray at 15-14 thanks to Sandbothe’s kill and subsequent ace. The Boilermakers would go on to fend off three OSU match-points before ultimately falling, 19-17, capped off by a solo stuff for Luisa Schirmer.
Ohio State is back at it again Saturday, hosting the Indiana Hoosiers in a regular season finale also acting as the 2016 Senior Night celebration.