Ohio State SURVIVES in five
The Ohio State Buckeyes survived in five after a HUGE Penn State comeback. After being on the road for over a month, No. 6 Ohio State returned home and treated their fans to a 3-2 (25-17, 25-15, 25-27, 22-25, 15-11) victory against No. 13 Penn State.
Gabby Gonzales and Jenaisya Moore were absolutely spectacular in the win. Moore led the Buckeyes with 21 kills on .500 hitting and Gonzales added 20 kills on .245 hitting. Mac Podraza had 59 total assists on the match as she led a terrific offensive outing. She was setting balls from the sidelines, and Moore would take the set and send bullets across the net for the kill. The Buckeyes were able to hold off a HUGE Penn State comeback attempt. The Nittany Lions came back from down 17-11 in the third set, facing a possible sweep, and proceeded to with the third and fourth sets to force a fifth. They even took the lead in the fifth.
Kashauna Williams led the Nittany Lions with 20 kills on the match, but the Nittany Lions struggled early on with their passing before heating up late in the match. After getting bullied by Ohio State's serve, PSU returned the favor and totaled 10 service aces.
PSU challenged an early Ohio State point when the set was tied at three in the fifth, but the call stayed with the Buckeyes. Out of the break, OSU started going off — they went on a 4-1 run to take a 8-5 lead in the race to 15. The Nittany Lions charged right back with two in a row before Gonzales sent a change-up over the net then another to keep a 10-7 lead. We saw some terrific defense, and OSU kept setting Gonzales until she successfully hammered one down. Penn State took a timeout with the Buckeyes five away. Ohio State got two more before Penn State finally stopped the roll as the Buckeyes were caught ball-watching on a miscommunication. The Lions followed it up with two more to get within two, down 12-10 when the Buckeyes took another timeout.
At last, the Buckeyes picked up set match point, and sealed the deal.
WE ARE HEADED TO FIVE!
Penn State has forced a fifth set and will now look for the reverse sweep. The Nittany Lions pulled out a 25-22 set four victory in a match that looked like it would be over in three. Kaushauna Williams is up to 18 kills for Penn State, and Zoe Weatherington and Allie Holland are behind her with eight and seven kills, respectively. Taylor Trammel was a big X-factor in the fourth set — up to six kills with five blocks.
Gabby Gonzales is up to 18 kills as well for the Buckeyes, as OSU will now look to survive in five sets.
We all thought this match was for sure an Ohio State sweep, and all of a sudden Penn State was leading in the fourth set. After falling behind early, PSU put together a few runs to take the lead. A 4-0 run put them ahead 8-7 lead and then another 3-0 run gave them a 13-10 lead. Ohio State went a 6-2 run to re-gain the lead, and it was clear it was going to be a point-for-point set from there. Williams' 18th kill put PSU up 23-22, and Taylor Trammel came up with a timely block to give the Nittany Lions set point. Could we really be going to five? After OSU was SO close to the sweep? Well, that is Big Ten volleyball for you. Seleisa Elisaia posted another ace to seal the fourth set victory.
PSU takes the third set to stay alive
We are headed to a fourth set at the Covelli. PSU pulled off a huge comeback to stay alive and avoid the sweep. Kaushauna Williams is up to 13 kills on .226 hitting.
Penn State went on a HUGE run down the stretch in the back half of the third set. Down 17-11, PSU went on a 6-2 run to make the score 19-17 Ohio State before the Buckeyes called a timeout. Alexis Markey led a 3-0 run before the timeout with two service aces. Gonzales ended the run with a kill of their own, but PSU was not done there. Another 3-0 run, this time with Seleisa Elisaia behind the service line and two more aces tied the set up at 21-all. Then it became the race to four points — Ohio State looking for the sweep and Penn State trying to stay alive and live to see another set. Rylee Rader and Moore posted two kills for OSU, and PSU took a timeout as they desperately looked for a way to pull this one out. Williams hammered one down out of the timeout for the Nittany Lions then went back to the service line before her team tied it up again at 23. She followed that up with a bullet ace to give PSU set point, their VERY first lead of the entire match. Williams gave the point right back with a service error, but the freshman Markley bailed her out on the next one. We saw another tie at 25-all, but Zoe Weatherington had a kill then fired an ace across the net to keep the Lions alive.
OSU leads 15-9 in third set
It looks like the OSU trend is continuing in the third set. Penn State faces a must-win third set, but the Buckeyes are still rolling. A 4-0 OSU run gave them an early 7-2 lead — they did it with Emily Londot behind the service line. PSU showed some fight, chipping away at a 12-6 deficit with a 4-1 run. Allie Holland posted a solo block and a service ace and Kaushauna Williams and Anjelina Starck had a kill apiece in the run. But, Londot and Jenaisya Moore went-back-to-back and the Buckeyes were the first to 15.
Ohio State cruises to 2-0 lead on the match
The Buckeyes are absolutely cruising. The offense is working well and they have been excellent from behind the service line to secure a 25-15 win in set 2. Gabby Gonzales and Jenasiya Moore are rolling, with 10 kills apiece. And get this — Moore is hitting above .600 and Gonzales is hitting above .500. They cannot be stopped right now. Emily Londot even drastically improved her stat line after a slower start. She is up to seven kills now on .462 hitting. The Buckeyes also have FIVE service aces on the match. PSU is struggling to pass and get in-system. They are hitting just .213 as a team, right now.
Mac Podraza sent a QB sneak over the net to give OSU a 20-12 lead. Then, Gonzalez continued her rampage with back-to-back kills to take a 23-14 lead, before Londot had the next two Ohio State points to secure the dominating set-two lead.
OSU leads again in second set
The Buckeyes are looking really comfortable at the Covelli Center for their first Big Ten home match. The second set started off tied three-three before Ohio State went on a 5-0 run to take the lead. Penn State called a timeout to slow the roll. The Nittany Lions are doing everything they can to keep the set close — trailing by as little as three. But Jenaisya Moore gave the Buckeyes a five-point lead again and a 15-10 advantage.
Check out this OSU block ⬇️
Ohio State takes 1-0 lead on the match
Ohio State took the first set over the Nittany Lions by a score of 25-17. The Buckeyes were on 🔥 in every aspect of the game. Gabby Gonzales posted seven kills on an absurd.778 hitting, and Jenaisya Moore chipped in six kills on .625 hitting. The Buckeyes hit .531 as a team to the Nittany Lions' .278.
Allie Holland and Anjelina Starck went back-to-back to give PSU some hope late in the set. But, Ohio State was the first to 20 after Gabby Gonzales went off for three consecutive kills. Holland and Starck answered right back with two of their own again, before OSU and PSU alternated the next couple of points. A Penn State attacking error, though, gave the Buckeyes set point, and Zoe Weatherington sent one out of bounds to give OSU the set.
OSU leads in first set
Ohio State came out strong with a 5-1 run. Penn State's passing had their setter off the net, and the offense struggled because of it. The Nittany Lions are hitting .200 on the set so far, whereas Ohio State is hitting a strong .529. Jenaisya Moore is on fire with four kills on .500 hitting. The offense is gelling and they have successfully put pressure on PSU with strong serving. The Buckeyes lead 15-8 early.
How to watch Ohio State vs. Penn State
Here's how you can check out two top-15 volleyball teams on Friday night:
- Time: 6:30 p.m. ET
- TV channel: Big Ten Network
- Location: Columbus, Ohio
Ohio State vs. Penn State, previewed
The Buckeyes just re-entered my Power 10 rankings and received a high ranking in the committee's top 10 reveal despite five losses on the season. That's because they've played the toughest schedule in all of college volleyball so far — and they're getting credit for it. Penn State was just knocked out of my Power 10, and not included in the committee's top 10 reveal after being swept by Michigan and Wisconsin last week. They started off the season incredibly strong, going 12-0 under new head coach Katie Schumacher-Cawley and an entirely new-look team. But the two sweeps knocked them down a bit. A win for PSU would be a huge statement and put it back into the top-10 conversation. The situation for OSU feels kind of like a must-win. They are playing a tough schedule, as is everyone now in the Big Ten, but at a certain point, you have to win games. A win for Ohio State would further solidify its top-10 stature.
We will see a lot of powerful players in this matchup. Kashauna Williams has been oh-so-impressive for the Nittany Lions, who pushed Wisconsin to a marathon third set in the sweep last week. The Lions set up Williams on every single play, and she terminated almost ALL of them. The Buckeyes have Mac Podraza at setter, of course, and Emily Londot leading the way offensively.
OSU and PSU featured in the best player at every position in college volleyball
This week, I broke down the best player at every position in college volleyball. I divided the country in half to create East and West All-Star teams. Teams like Texas, Nebraska, Stanford, Oregon, Baylor are on the West and teams like Wisconsin, Minnesota, Penn State, Purdue, Pittsburgh are on the East.
A player from both Ohio State and Penn State made an appearance on the East All-Star team. Penn State's Allie Holland made it on as one of the two middle blockers, and Ohio State's Mac Podraza is the East setter.
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