April 23, 2023

Ohio State Opens 22nd NCAA Tournament vs. King April 30


Season Stats | NCAA Bracket

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Ohio State will be making its 22nd appearance in the NCAA Tournament when the Buckeyes take on King (16-15) April 30 in Fairfax, Virginia, to open the event.

The 2023 NCAA Tournament will be played May 4-6 at EagleBank Arena with George Mason University serving as the host institution.

The Buckeyes earned the Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association’s automatic bid to the 2-2023 NCAA Tournament after knocking off the No. 1 seed Ball State in Muncie, Indiana, Saturday, 3-1. Ohio State, who tied for the MIVA regular-season title with an 11-3 league record, was the No. 3 seed in the postseason conference tournament.

Several Buckeyes, including setter Michael Wright, the MIVA Tournament MVP, are looking forward to returning to the East Coast for the 2023 NCAA Tournament after winning the conference title.

“It was an awesome experience, definitely a day I will remember for the rest of my life,” Wright, a native of Richmond, Virginia, said. “It was extra special playing in Muncie, the place we wanted to win it if it wasn’t at Covelli.

“It was also nice to see our team collect some accolades not just in the tournament, but throughout the season this year,” Wright said. “I couldn’t have done it without all 18 other guys in our gym and our coaching staff from Coach (Kevin) Burch all the way to Rayden Saidor (athletic trainer). It’s going to be great to return home to Virginia and compete in my home state with the team. We have a lot of guys from the DMV, so NCAA’s will feel like a home game. It feels great to be back on top after all these years, especially for the seniors because at the time we all committed, Ohio State was on top and it’s great to be back.”

Jacob Pasteur, a member of the 2023 MIVA All-Tournament team and 2023 MIVA Player of the Year, is a native of Westminster, Maryland. He said watching the team excel this season has been a pleasure.

“Hard work doesn’t always pay off but this season, it surely has,” Pasteur said. “This team has been playing as a single unit for the first time since I’ve been here. Day-in-and-day-out we genuinely have each other’s back. Young guys like Shane Wetzel and Cole Young have stepped up and embraced their role while the veterans – Jack Stevens and Michael Wright – have been steady as a rock. We’re thrilled at this opportunity to go to Fairfax to play in the NCAA Tournament. This chance is what we worked so hard for and I know this squad is going to make the most of it.”

Burch, whose Buckeyes are on an 11-match win streak, knows there is more to accomplish this season.

“This is a special group of young men that has put together an incredible run,” Burch, now in his fourth season at Ohio State as head coach, said. “I am extremely proud of their accomplishments but even more proud of how they did it. We have work to do but I have all the confidence in the world these guys will be ready for Fairfax next week.”

Ohio State last appeared in the NCAA Tournament in 2018. The Buckeyes finished with a 25-6 record that year after winning the MIVA regular-season and tournament titles. In the NCAA Tournament, Ohio State defeated King 3-0 in the Play-In Match before a 3-2 win over UC Irvine in the semifinals. Long Beach State won the national championship with a 3-1 win over the Buckeyes in the finals.

The Buckeyes have faced off with King twice previously, first in 2018 at St. John Arena (NCAA Play-In) in Columbus and most recently Jan. 17, 2020, at the Covelli Center, a 3-0 win for Ohio State.

Ohio State traveled to Fairfax earlier this season for matches against Grand Canyon (L, 3-2) and George Mason (W, 3-1).


Ohio State Buckeyes