No. 10 OSU Opens Season Nets Five-Game Win Over No. 9 IPFW


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Columbus, Ohio - The 10th-ranked Ohio State (1-0 overall, 1-0 Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association) men's volleyball team rallied with 12 blocks in the final two games to defeat ninth-ranked IPFW (0-1, 0-1), 3-2 (25-30, 30-28, 25-30, 30-21, 15-6) in front of 667 fans in the opening match of the season, played in St. John Arena.

OSU's John Albertson (Sr.-Jr., Ballwin, Mo.) and Robbie Klein (Sr.-Jr., Cincinnati, Ohio) shared team-high honors with 21 points in the contest. Albertson had 15 kills (.700), two solo blocks and eight assist blocks while Klein had a team-high 20 kills and two assist blocks. C.J. Macias posted a match-high 25.5 points for IPFW with 23 kills, an ace serve, a solo block and an assist block.

IPFW broke a 1-1 tie in game one with an OSU error and a Josh Stewart kill to lead 3-1. A Ben Spurlock (Sr.-So., Stow, Ohio) kill made it 3-2. A Macias kill made it 4-2. A Spurlock kill cut the margin to 4-3. The Mastodons, with kills from Graydon Ainsworth, Oliver Kook and Jason Yhost and a Buckeye error, opened an 8-3 lead. At 28-22, IPFW kills from Stewart and Macias set game point at 29-22. A Buckeye block from Daniel Mathews (Sr., Shorewood, Wis.) and Spurlock, a John Klanac (So.-Fr., Orchard Park, N.Y.) and a Mastodon error stopped three game points to cut the margin to 29-25. A Yhost kill on the fourth game point gave IPFW a 30-25 win in the game. The Mastodons hit .429 to .316 for OSU.

Game two saw four lead changes and 17 ties. Tied at 22, two kills from Macias and a Buckeye error gave IPFW a 25-22 lead. OSU kills from Jason Tobkin (So.-Fr., Fairfield, Ohio) and Brett Versen (5th-Sr., Centerville, Ohio) and a solo block by Albertson tied the game at 25. An OSU error and two kills from Macias gave the Mastodons a 28-25 lead. An IPFW error made it 28-26. Albertson, with a kill and solo block, tied the game at 28. A Mathews-Albertson kill gave Ohio State game point at 29-28. The Buckeyes won the game with an Albertson kill at 30-28. The Buckeyes hit .500 for the game to .282 for IPFW.

Tied at 18 in game three, two IPFW error gave Ohio State a 20-18 lead. A Yhost kill and a Mastodon error made it 21-19. A Macias kill and an OSU error tied the game at 21. IFPW took a 23-21 lead with a Macias kill and a Steve Rogers solo block. A Versen kill made it 23-22. A solo block by Macias and a Rogers-Yhost block gave the Mastodons a 25-22 lead. A Spurlock kill and a Buckeye error made it 26-23. A Tobkin kill and an OSU error moved the score to 27-24. An Albertson kill cut the IPFW lead to two at 27-25. Kills from Yhost and Brock Ullrich set game point for the Mastodons at 29-25. An OSU error ended the game at 30-25 to give IPFW a 2-1 lead in the match. The Mastodons hit .240 for the game to .154 for Ohio State.

Tied at four in game four, Ohio State collected the next four points to open an 8-4 lead. The run included an Albertson kill, a Spurlock ace serve and two Mastodon errors. After a Rogers' kill made it 8-5, a Klanac kill, an IPFW error, a Mathews-Albertson block and a Versen ace serve took the lead to seven at 12-5 as IPFW called a time out. The Buckeyes expanded the lead to as many as 14 (28-14) before the Mastodons scored seven straight points to cut the lead to 28-21. The run began with a Dan McNerney kill, Mike Morici ace serve and two kills from Macias to make it 28-18. IPFW kills from McNerney and Ben Duckworth and an OSU error made it 28-21. The Buckeyes stopped the run with a Spurlock kill to reach game point at 29-21. The Buckeyes won the game, 30-21, off an IPFW error to tie the match at two games each. Ohio State hit .375 for the game to .029 for the Mastodons.

Game five opened with a Macias kill for a 1-0 IPFW lead. Ohio State responded with the next five points starting with a Klanac kill, three consecutive Mathews-Albertson blocks and an IPFW error to take a 5-1 lead. A Macias kill made it 5-2. Buckeye kills from Klein and Spurlock, a Mathews solo block and a Klein-Spurlock block gave Ohio State a 9-2 lead. IPFW, with an Oliver Kook kill, made it 9-3. Kills from Versen and Klein kill, an IPFW error and a Spurlock-Versen block made it 13-3 Buckeyes. The Mastodons, with a Kook-Yhost block and an Ullrich kill made it 13-5, OSU. Errors by both teams set match point for Ohio State at 14-6. An IPFW serve into the net ended the game at 15-6 to give Ohio State a 3-2 win in the match. The Buckeyes hit .444 for the game to -222 for the Mastodons.

For the match, Ohio State hit .338 to .192 for IFPW. The Buckeyes had a 75-62 margin in kills while the Mastodons had a 4-2 advantage in ace serves. The Buckeyes gave up 23 service errors to 11 for IPFW. Ohio State had a 47-43 margin over IPFW in digs with OSU's Conor Martin (Sr., Avon Lake, Ohio) and Mastodon Matt Pliske each recorded a match-high 17 digs in the match. At the net, the Buckeyes had a 19.5 to 11 advantage in team blocks. Leading the match in blocks with 11 was OSU's Mathews with a solo and 10 assists. Albertson added two solos and eight assists in the contest. For Ohio State Mathews recorded 68 assists in the match with Ainsworth recording 48 for the Mastodons.

Ohio State continues at home next week when the Buckeyes host third-ranked Penn State Saturday and St. Francis (Pa.) Sunday. Both matches begin at 7 p.m. in St. John Arena.

Article courtesy of Ohio State athletics.

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