Oct. 3, 1999

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Ohio State (7-4 overall, 1-3 Big Ten) rallied from a 2-1 Illinois (7-3, 3-1) lead to send the match to the rally scoring fifth game, but could not overcome a strong Illini effort in the final game. The 4-15, 15-5, 15-3, 9-15, 15-10 Illinois win gives OSU its third Conference loss in four matches.

Illini Shadia Haddah scored a match-high 26 kills while Betsy Spicer had 16 and Tracey Marshall 13. Spicer picked up a team-high 10 digs and was one of three Illinois players to have six total blocks (1-5) along with Haddah (2-4) and Sara Sorrell (1-5). Illinois setter Melissa Beitz recorded 62 assists for the match. OSU’s Jen Flynn had a team-high 17 kills with Dana Stearns adding 15, Rosie Snow 14 and Suzie Stiling 11. Snow had a match-high 19 digs while Stiling recorded a team-high six assist blocks. OSU’s Katie Virtue picked up 53 assists and three ace serves in the match.

The Buckeyes opened the match with a 15-4 game one win. OSU took a 3-0 lead and quickly built a commanding lead behind four kills by Jen Flynn, aces serves by Katie Virtue, Flynn and Nikki Cisco and five Illinois hitting errors for points. OSU Hit .556 for the game to .185 for Illinois.

Game two saw the squads trade places as the Illinois tied the match with a 15-5 win. Two OSU errors and a Shadia Haddah kill opened a 3-0 lead for Illinois. The Buckeyes helped the Illini cause with eight hitting errors for points in the 15-5 win. Shadia Haddah was a big part of the game for the Illini as she had eight kills and hit .400. Illinois hit .419 for the game to .089 for Ohio State. The Illini put together eight blocks in the game.

The Illini took a 2-1 lead with a 15-3 win in game three. Illinois opened up a 5-0 lead in the game off four OSU errors and a Shadia Haddah kill. The Buckeyes had eight hitting errors along with an Illini ace by Dena Schorn and a game-winning kill by Haddah to close the scoring. The Illini hit .200 for the game while Ohio State hit -.192 Ohio State tied the match at two games each with a 15-9 game four win. The Illini took a 2-0 lead on back-to-back ace serves by Tracey Marshall. The Buckeyes trailed 6-2 before coming to life with an ace by Nikki Cisco, kills by Rosie Snow and Jen Flynn and three Illini errors to take an 8-6 Buckeye lead. A Betsy Spicer kill cut the OSU lead to 8-7, but two kills by Dana Stearns, ace serves by Katie Virtue and Rosie Snow and an Illinois hitting error put OSU ahead 13-7. Buckeye errors cut the lead to 13-9 while an Illinois error put OSU at game point, 14-9. The Buckeyes tied the match at two games apiece on a block by Suzie Stiling and Katie Virtue, winning the game 15-9. OSU hit .462 for the game to .300 for Illinois.

Game five opened with Illinois taking a 7-0 lead off two OSU errors and five Illini kills, three from Shadia Haddah. Illinois held a 13-6 lead before a Jen Flynn kills, an ace serve by Dana Stearns and an Illinois hitting error cut the lead to 13-9. Haddah scored her 26th kill to set match point at 14-9 but a service error by Betsy Spicer made the score 14-10. The Illini closed out the game at 15-10 on an OSU hitting error, winning the match 3-2. The Illini hit .429 for the game to .043 for Ohio State. Haddah collected five kills in eight swings in the game.

For the match Illinois hit .317 to .207 for Ohio State. The Illini outblocked the Buckeyes 15 to 12 while Ohio State had the edge in ace serves, eight to five. Each team recorded 50 digs while the Illinois had a 73 to 67 margin in kills.

Ohio State returns to the road with a Wednesday match at Penn State (14-1, 4-0) and then travels to Northwestern (2-12, 0-4) on Sunday. Illinois returns home to face Purdue (10-3, 2-2) Friday and Wisconsin (10-4, 3-1) Saturday.