Last Updated 5:49 PM, September 26, 2021

No. 20 Penn State volleyball pulls off a huge Big Ten upset with sweep over No. 3 Ohio State

College volleyball rankings: Louisville rises, BYU enters into Power 10
9:32 pm, September 26, 2021

Penn State pulls off the sweep over Ohio State

Penn State just brought out the brooms in a big-time sweep over No. 3 Ohio State at Rec Hall. 

The third set looked a lot like the first two — tight and even matchup the whole way until Penn State was able to turn it on and pull away late. Penn State notched two in a row to take a 23-21 lead and force Ohio State to take a timeout, but then the Nittany Lions did what they did best all match and notched two more when it mattered most for the win. 

Penn State ultimately outhit the Buckeyes .380 to .269, but it was at crunch time when they performed the best and when Ohio State fell apart. Adanna Rollins had a huge day with 14 kills on a crazy .524 hitting efficiency and Jonni Parker notched 12 kills on .379 hitting. Penn State is on a roll with 12-straight set wins and now a 2-0 start in the Big Ten. They looked confident on their side of the net and were able to get everyone involved offensively. 

Ohio State now notched two back-to-back losses this week with a five-set loss to Purdue and now a three-set loss to Penn State. Emily Londot led all hitters with 17 kills, but it wasn't enough to get past the Nittany Lions on their home court. The Buckeyes seem to have all the components and played really well, but they fell victim to momentum shifts and were unable to close it out. 

9:00 pm, September 26, 2021

Penn State takes 2-0 lead with 27-25 win in set two

Not sure the end of this set could have gotten any closer. We had a tie at 21, 22, 23, 24 and 25 before Kailtin Hord sent two back-to-back bullets over the net with beautiful accuracy to take the second set 27-25. Ohio State is right there with them, but they are having trouble sealing the deal. Penn State, on the other hand, is not. They are playing with big energy, Gabby Blossom is setting a great match and this offense is working efficiently. 

Penn State hit .302 in the second set as Parker and Rollins led with nine kills each. Penn State might have three losses on the season, but they are showing what they are made of right here and now against a tough Ohio State team. 

Check out some Penn State highlights this match: 

8:40 pm, September 26, 2021

We are tied again in set two

Just when it looked like Penn State was pulling away in the second set, the Buckeyes tied it up at 11 with back-to-back kills from Mia Grunze and Londot and then again at 14. The Buckeyes were the first to 15 after Penn State had two back-to-back errors. Ohio State then took the lead before Penn State was able to tie things up again. We are tied at 17 in set two. 

Even still, the Nittany Lions are hitting .339 and the Buckeyes are hitting .327. Penn State has four blocks to the Buckeyes two, but it is clear as day that Ohio State doesn't want to give up another set. Londot is up to nine kills and Rollins and Parker lead the Nittany Lions with seven kills apiece. 

8:26 pm, September 26, 2021

Penn State takes 1-0 lead with 25-19 victory in set one

Penn State pulled away in the second half of the set and improved to an extremely efficient .517 hitting percentage to win the set 25-19. Jonni Parker sent a monster kill over the net for set point. 

Adanna Rollins leads with five kills for the Nittany Lions followed by Parker with four and Erika Pritchard with three. Kaitlin Hord is hitting .667 so far on the match. In what started out as a point-for-point set ended up with Penn State showing off its efficient offense. They are hitting well out-of-system and playing with a loud crowd behind them at Rec Hall. 

Londot leads the Buckeyes offensively with five kills followed by Rylee Rader. 

8:19 pm, September 26, 2021

Penn State leads by three in tight first set

Penn State and Ohio State are both hitting .381 in this point-for-point first set. To get even weirder, both teams have six different players with a kill and there have been eight ties. This one can clearly go either way. 

There has yet to be a player on either team with more than one kill. We've got a ton of balance. 


7:30 pm, September 26, 2021

Ohio State vs. Penn State, pregame

Penn State VB

Ohio State is set to take on Penn State volleyball on the road at 4 p.m. ET on Big Ten Network. The Buckeyes are coming off of its first loss of the season after a five-set, top-10 battle with Purdue. They will be looking to bounce back with a ranked win over No. 20 Penn State. 

The Nittany Lions do have three losses on the season, but to really strong teams: Georgia Tech, Oregon and Stanford.

This is a well-coached team under Russ Rose that is historically successful. They’ve got great players with Jonni Parker and Kaitlyn Hord, and can be extremely competitive for Ohio State. They pushed a strong Stanford team to five sets recently behind a 21 kill performance from Parker and balanced offense with Parker, Erica Pritchard, Hord and Adanna Rollins all in double digit kills. 

The Buckeyes are led offensively by Emily Londot, who posted 20 kills in the loss to Purdue, followed by Gabby Gonzales and Rylee Rader. 

Penn State is 32-8 all-time over Ohio State, but the Buckeyes emerged last season as a national title contender and have continued the upward trend into 2021. 

5:02 pm, September 26, 2021

What the polls say

Ohio State enters Sunday's match at No. 3 in the latest AVCA top 25 rankings. Penn State ranks No. 20. 

Here's the full top 25: 






1 Texas (53) 1,589 8-0 1
2 Wisconsin (11) 1,547 8-0 2
3 Ohio State 1,426 10-0 3
4 Pittsburgh 1,403 10-0 4
5 Louisville 1,386 8-0 5
6 Washington 1,210 7-1 7
T-7 Kentucky 1,153 7-3 8
T-7 Purdue 1,153 8-1 9
9 Minnesota 1,038 4-3 11
10 Baylor 962 5-3 12
11 BYU 920 9-1 15
12 Nebraska 896 6-3 6
13 Oregon 863 9-1 13
14 Stanford 841 5-3 16
15 Utah 654 7-2 10
16 Creighton 602 12-1 17
17 Florida 574 6-4 14
18 Georgia Tech 533 9-1 18
19 UCLA 445 7-1 19
20 Penn State 427 7-3 20
21 Tennessee 289 8-2 22
22 Western Kentucky 256 11-1 23
23 Pepperdine 240 8-1 24
24 Colorado 128 10-0 25
25 San Diego 114 6-3 21

Others receiving votes and listed on two or more ballots: Marquette 41; North Carolina 39; Florida State 16; South Carolina 16; Ole Miss 12; UNLV 10; Boise State 7; Michigan 6; Rice 4.

6 teams mentioned on only one ballot for a total of 7 combined points.

Dropped Out: none

4:56 pm, September 26, 2021

Here's how Ohio State and Penn State match up

Ohio State enters Sunday coming off its first loss of the season, which was to No. 7 Purdue. Prior to that, the Buckeyes rattled off 10 straight wins. 

Penn State comes in with a three-game win streak. 

Ohio State Stat Penn State
9-0 Record 8-3
No. 5 AVCA ranking No. 20
14.8 Kills per set 13.8
.299 Hitting percentage .297
.137 Opponent hitting .173
1.3 Aces per set 1.6
13.9 Assists per set 12.6
15.3 Digs per set 12.6
2.6 Blocks per set 3.3
4:42 pm, September 26, 2021

Series history

Since 1998, Ohio State and Penn State have played each other 40 times. In those 40 matches, Penn State has the clear advantage, going 32-8.

Let's take a look at how both schools did in their last 10 matches: 

Date Score Location
March 3, 2021 3-0, Ohio State Penn State
Feb. 17, 2021 3-2, Ohio State Ohio State
Oct. 12, 2019 3-0, Penn State Penn State
Oct. 6, 2018 3-0, Penn State Penn State
Sept. 23, 2018 3-1, Ohio State Ohio State
Oct. 6, 2017 3-2, Penn State Ohio State
Nov. 12, 2016 3-2, Ohio State Ohio State
Oct. 19, 2016 3-0, Penn State Penn State
Oct. 30, 2015 3-1, Penn State Penn State
Oct. 28, 2015 3-0, Penn State Ohio State
4:37 pm, September 26, 2021

How to watch Ohio State vs. Penn State volleyball

Ohio State Athletics OSU volley

Here's what you need to know about how to follow Sunday's Ohio State vs. Penn State match: 

  • When: 4 p.m. ET | Sunday, Sept. 26
  • Where: University Park, Pennsylvania 
  • TV: Big Ten Network 
  • Watch online: Penn State
  • Live stats: Click or tap here