Dec. 5, 2015

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COLUMBUS, Ohio — The Ohio State University women’s volleyball program steamrolled its way into the NCAA `Sweet 16′ by dumping American University (25-9) in straight sets (25-23, 25-11, 25-17). Following back-to-back sweeps by a combined scoring margin of +59 to open the 2015 NCAA Tournament, the Buckeyes become one of just 11 schools nationally to reach at least four `Sweet 16′ appearances since 2010.

Ohio State travels to Lexington, Ky., next weekend for the Regional hosted by the University of Kentucky. The12th-seeded Buckeyes will face No. 5 seed Washington on Friday (Dec. 11) at 7:30 p.m. ET.

• The Buckeyes never trailed at any point in each of the three sets vs. American

• Ohio State concludes 2015 with a 12-3 (.800) record at home, improving to 310-132 (.701) all-time inside St. John since starting competition there in 1986.

Geoff Carlston has guided five teams to the NCAA `Sweet 16′ in 13 seasons as a Division-I head coach

Valeria León ran her season dig total to 548, pulling within 18 of the all-time school single-season record (Sarah Mignin – 566; 2011). León’s 4.35 digs per set average is the top mark.

• The Buckeyes travel to Lexington for postseason play for the third time in the last four years. Ohio State played its First and Second Round matches at Memorial Coliseum in 2012 and 2014.

The three-headed monster of Elizabeth Campbell, Katie Mitchell and Taylor Sandbothe combined for 38 kills and each attacked above .400, highlighted by Campbell’s .542 hitting percentage en route to 14 terminations. Overall, the Buckeyes more than doubled up American in the kills column by racking up 47 while limiting AU to 23 put-aways on the night.

Ohio State’s arsenal was bolstered by dynamic execution from the service stripe as well. Four different Buckeyes laced multiple aces and the Scarlet & Gray registered 10 aces in the match.

Defensive numbers, too, indicated a distinct Buckeye upper hand. Ohio State kept the Eagles in check accumulating 45 digs and seven blocks to stymie American’s offense down to a .128 hitting efficiency. Sandbothe was in on five of the seven stuffs, continuing her ascent up the OSU record book in every career and single-season blocking category.

American called the first timeout of the contest following a kill from Campbell which pushed Ohio State ahead 8-4 in the opening frame. The Eagles next timeout came at 18-12 before a flurry of their own closed the gap to 21-19 and caused OSU to burn one. The Buckeyes regained control and earned a set-point at 24-20. A bit of a scare ensued when American fended off three straight daggers prior to Ohio State ultimately closing the door 25-23 on a Sandbothe kill.

Ohio State then boat raced the Eagles in the second stanza, floating to a 25-11 triumph. Tyler Richardson bounced a kill to make it 18-4. The 14-point cushion would remain by set’s end. Sandbothe took care of the final point once again, drilling another set-clinching kill for point number 25.

The third and final frame was a Taylor Hughes portfolio builder. The freshman setter divvied out 16 assists and navigated the Buckeyes to a .548 attacking efficiency. She contributed in 18 of Ohio State’s 25 points with her 16 assists, ace and block assist. Fittingly, Sandbothe shut the door once again, burying kills for the final two tallies of the 25-17 eliminator.

VIDEO: Post-match press conference with Coach Carlston, Tyler Richardson, Emily Ruetter & Valeria Leon —>

— OhioStateWVolleyball (@ohiostatewvball) December 6, 2015