COLUMBUS, Ohio – The eighth-ranked Ohio State men’s volleyball team fell to seventh-ranked Penn State, 3-0 (25-22, 25-23, 25-17), Saturday in St. John Arena. Prior to the match, the Buckeyes honored its 2011 National Championship team by revealing its title banner for the first time.
Ohio State (2-3) was led by senior Shawn Sangrey with 10 kills, three block assists and five digs. Senior Mik Berzins added seven kills, while middle blockers Grayson Overman and Shawn Herron finished with five kills. Herron led the team with four blocks (2s, 2a). Junior Kyle Lawrence had a team-best 21 assists to go with five digs and three blocks (1s, 2a).
The Nittany Lions (1-0) had three student-athletes finish with double-digit kills. Tom Comfort totaled 12 kills, while Joe Sunder tallied 11 and Jace Olsen had 10 kills and 10 digs. Setter Edgado Goas led the field with 40 assists.
After exchanging points to start the set, the Nittany Lions used a three-point rally to take a 5-3 advantage. A kill from Sangrey and a PSU attack error locked the score at 9-9, but the visitors pulled ahead again for another two-point lead at 11-9. Penn State held on to its slim margin throughout the rest of the set until kills from Herron and freshman Michael Henchy tied it up at 20-20. The Nittany Lions finished the set with a kill and service ace to win 25-22.
Penn State took a quick 5-2 lead to force an early Ohio State timeout in set two. The Nittany Lions pushed its lead to five at 14-9, but the Buckeyes favored three-straight PSU errors to come within two at 14-12. Down four at 20-16, a kill by Overman triggered a three-point Buckeye run and a kill by Sangrey tied the set at 23 apiece. PSU battled back to take a 25-23 win and went into the intermission with a 2-0 lead.
The two squads swapped runs at the start of the final set until, down one at 11-10, Penn State pushed a five-point run to take a 15-11 lead. The Nittany Lions used the momentum of the run to add to its lead and went up 22-15. A kill from Sangrey stalled the PSU rally, but the visiting squad took the set on back-to-back kills for a 25-17 win.
Ohio State continues its homestand as the Buckeyes host Sacred Heart, Jan. 17. The match is set for 7 p.m. in St. John Arena. Admission is free.