Oct. 24, 2012

COLUMBUS, Ohio – The No. 20 Ohio State women’s volleyball team kicks off the second half of the Big Ten schedule this weekend, traveling to No. 4 Nebraska and Iowa. The Buckeyes and Cornhuskers face off Friday at 8 p.m. ET in Lincoln and the match will be streamed live on Ohio State and the Hawkeyes compete Saturday in another 8 p.m. ET match held in Iowa City.


Friday, October 26
No. 20 Ohio State Buckeyes (15-7, 6-4 Big Ten) at No. 4 Nebraska Cornhuskers (17-2, 9-1 Big Ten)
Saturday, October 27
Ohio State vs. Iowa Hawkeyes (10-13, 2-8 Big Ten prior to Wednesday night’s match vs. Penn State)

Live stats:
Live video: (Friday) / (Saturday)

This week’s competition marks the second half of the Big Ten schedule for all teams. No. 1 Penn State sits atop of the standings with a perfect 10-0 record in the conference. No. 4 Nebraska is second at 9-1 and No. 10 Minnesota is third with an 8-2 mark. No. 20 Ohio State is fourth at 6-4 and No. 21 Purdue rounds out the top 5 with a 5-5 record.
                Nebraska was voted to win the conference by the league coaches prior to the start of the season. Ohio State was chosen to finish sixth.

Ohio State closed out the first half of the Big Ten season at Michigan State and came away with a crucial 3-1 (24-26, 25-22, 24-23, 25-22) victory on the road to hold on to fourth in the league standings.
                Senior Mari Hole notched her 11th double-double of the season after finishing with 21 kills and 16 digs in the match. Senior Emily Danks totaled 14 kills and added a season-high 12 digs with four blocks (1s, 3a). Junior Kaitlyn Leary was the third Buckeye with double-digit kills, having 15 in the match with a .481 attack percentage.
                Juniors Davionna DiSalvatore and Julianne Mandolfo paced the Buckeye defense, having 16 and 15 digs, respectively. Senior middle blocker Mariah Booth had a match-high five blocks (3s, 2a), while freshman Andrea Kacsits added three (1s, 2a).

Seniors Mari Hole and Amanda Peterson are leading the squad in double-double performances this season. Hole has a team-best 11 double-doubles (kills/digs) and has recorded double-digit kills in 21 of Ohio State’s 22 matches. She has had four matches with 20 or more kills. Last season, Hole totaled 32 matches with double-digit kill margins and 21 double-doubles.
                Peterson has totaled five double-doubles (assists/digs) for the Buckeyes with double-digit assists in all matches played. Junior libero Davionna DiSalvatore has led the Buckeye defense all season and has recorded double-digit digs in 19 of 22 matches this season.

The 2012 senior class of Mariah Booth, Emily Danks, Mari Hole and Amanda Peterson have been an instrumental part in the program’s success over the last four years. Booth, Danks and Peterson were all a part of head coach Geoff Carlston’s first recruiting class with Hole joining the squad last season.
                The quartet has been leaders in their respective positions on the court this season for the Buckeyes. Hole and Danks are the team’s key offensive performers with Booth leading the blocking corps. Peterson has paced the Buckeye offense and is among the Big Ten’s best in assists. All four will conclude their careers in the Top 20 on a handful of Ohio State career lists.

The Buckeyes seem to love the challenge of playing on the road as the squad is 7-1 this season when competing away from St. John Arena. The team’s lone loss this year came at the hands of No. 10 Minnesota (Sept. 28).
                Key road victories include a five-set win over Maryland (Sept. 1) and another 3-2 victory over then-No. 21 Illinois (Oct. 5) to snap a nine-match losing skid to the Illini. Most recently, the Buckeyes earned a critical road win, defeating Michigan State in four sets (Oct. 20).

In his fifth year at Ohio State, head coach Geoff Carlston needs three more wins for 100 overall with the Buckeyes. He also needs 10 more wins for 300 in his 13-year coaching career. Carlston is 97-64 at Ohio State and 290-128 in his career.

Senior Emily Danks has consistently been one of the top servers in the Big Ten and had been making her way up the Ohio State career service aces list. She entered the season with 180, needing 28 to break Lisa Bettio’s record of 207 set in 1985. Danks picked up the record-tying ace in the middle of set two against Northwestern (10/6) and broke the record in the same set to give the Buckeyes a 25-23 victory.
                With 216 overall, Danks’ career average sits at .46 aces per set over 469 sets played to rank second overall in the category behind Bettio’s .52 average.

Five Buckeyes have found their way into program history, placing themselves on a handful of Ohio State’s career lists.
                Along with her record-setting 216 service aces, senior Emily Danks reached another career milestone earlier this season. In Ohio State’s 3-0 win over Toledo (8/25), she became the 19th Buckeye to record 1,000 kills in a career. Danks is tied for 14th overall with 1,225 kills, 10th in attacks (3,181) and 17th in attack percentage (.264).
                Danks also ranks 11th in assist blocks (282), 12th in total blocks (319), 18th in solo blocks (37), 13th in total points (1,619.0) and 20th in points per set (3.45).
                Senior Mari Hole is fourth in kills per set (4.00), fifth in points per set (4.50), 12th in digs per set (2.69) and 17th in solo blocks (40), while senior Mariah Booth ninth in blocks per set (.94). Booth is also 17th in block assists (223) and 18th total blocks (259).
                 Setters Taylor Sherwin and Amanda Peterson rank in both assist categories. Peterson ranks eighth in assists average (8.41) and ninth in total (2,338). Sherwin sits ninth in assists average (8.33) and 13th in total assists (883).

Ohio State ranks in the top 10 in all seven statistical categories among Big Ten schools entering the weekend. The Buckeyes are sixth in hitting percentage (.250), kills (13.47) and assists (12.70). The team is also ranked seventh in aces (1.18), eighth in blocks (2.20), ninth in digs (13.95), and 10th in opponent percentage (.213).
                The Buckeyes also rank in the top 5 against Big Ten opponents, including third in opponent hitting percentage (.204).
                Individually, Mari Hole ranks sixth in kills per set at 3.99 and seventh in points (4.46). Senior Emily Danks is fourth in aces (.43), while junior Davionna DiSalvatore is seventh in digs (3.78). Senior setter Amanda Peterson is 10th in the conference, averaging 8.29 assists per set.
                Against Big Ten opponents, Hole is fifth in kills (4.05) and sixth in points (4.41). Danks leads the conference in service aces (.49), while DiSalvatore is sixth in digs at 3.92.

The Nebraska Cornhuskers enter Friday’s match ranked No. 4 nationally. The Huskers hold a 17-2 overall record and are 9-1 in the Big Ten. Nebraska swept Illinois 3-0 this past weekend and the team’s only loss in the B1G was against No. 1 Penn State (9/19).
                Senior Gina Mancuso is ranked in the Big Ten in three categories, averaging 3.42 kills (10th), .34 service aces (5th) and 4.08 points (10th). Freshman Meghan Haggerty is fourth overall in the B1G with a .415 hitting percentage, while senior Lauren Cook is third overall with an 11.18 assist average.
                The Huskers lead the all-time series 9-3 over the Buckeyes. The two squads met earlier this season, ending in a 3-1 set loss for the Buckeyes (17-25, 25-12, 25-20, and 25-14).

The Iowa Hawkeyes are set to host No. 1 Penn State Wednesday, before taking on the Buckeyes Saturday. The Hawkeyes hold a 10-13 overall record and are 2-8 in conference.  Their last match was at Northwestern (10/21) and ended in a three-set loss for the Hawkeyes.
                Junior Bethany Yeager leads the B1G in digs with a 4.73 average, while junior Nikki Dailey ranks eighth in the league in assists with a 9.67 average. Sophomore Alex Lovell leads the team in kills with 288 this season and 323.5 points.
                The Buckeyes hold a 55-9 record against the Hawkeyes with Ohio State winning the last eight matches, including a 3-0 (25-18, 25-20, and 25-16) win to open the Big Ten season (9/21).

The Buckeyes hold on to the No. 20 spot in both the AVCA Top 25 Coaches’ Poll and the Volleyball Magazine Top 20 Coaches’ Poll.
               The Big Ten has five teams ranked in the AVCA poll, including No. 1 Penn State. Nebraska (4), Minnesota (10), Ohio State (20) and Purdue (21) are also ranked. Michigan State and Illinois are also receiving votes.  

HEAD COACH Geoff Carlston
Geoff Carlston is in his fifth year as head coach of Ohio State and is the fifth head coach in the 42-year history of the program. Under his direction, the Buckeyes have recorded three 20-win seasons and have reached the NCAA Semifinals twice (2010, 2011). He has coached AVCA All-America honorable mentions Katie Dull, Mari Hole and Emily Danks. Carlston is 97-64 overall at Ohio State and is 40-50 in Big Ten competition.
                Carlston is a 1993 graduate from the University of Minnesota. Prior to Ohio State, he spent five years as head coach of Ohio University where his squads played in five NCAA tournaments and captured five-consecutive MAC titles.

Ohio State returns to St. John Arena for a pair of matches vs. Wisconsin and nationally-ranked Minnesota. The Buckeyes and Badgers battle Friday at 7 p.m. ET, while Ohio State takes on Minnesota Saturday at 7. Ticket information can be found at