COLUMBUS, Ohio – Nearly everyone got in on the action Friday night at St. John Arena as the No. 1 Ohio State University men’s volleyball team (8-0) sent 13 different Buckeyes onto the court in a quick disposal of Barton College (3-2). Ohio State now has an opportunity to match the all-time school record of 32 straight wins, taking on No. 4 Long Beach State (7-1) Saturday night at 7 p.m. ET.
• Ohio State is riding a 31-match winning streak
• The Buckeyes last suffered an NCAA loss on February 6, 2016
• Ohio State has won 93 of 111 sets (84%) during the victorious stretch
• The streak includes five wins over Top-5 opponents and nearly half (14) against teams ranked inside the Top-12 nationally
• Also included in the run are 14 straight wins in true road games
• Longest winning streak in Ohio State history is 32 matches (24-0 in 1969 and the first eight contests of 1970)
• Loyola owns 40-match run in 2014-15 while UCLA is believed to own the all-time record of 47 straight
• The Buckeyes are also riding a 20-set winning streak, sweeping the last six opponents after taking the final two frames vs. No. 2 UCLA on Jan. 7
Miles Johnson ripped the 123rd service ace of his career, pulling even with Steve Potter (1992-95) for the most in Ohio State history. Nicolas Szerszen isn’t far behind, however, after smacking a pair of aces against Barton. His career aces total jumped to 121.
— Ohio State on BTN (@OhioStateOnBTN) January 28, 2017
Sanil Thomas handled setting duties for the night, dishing out 37 assists while filling in for All-American Christy Blough who had taken a red-eye flight back from California Friday morning following a west coast med school interview for the biomedical engineering major. Thomas guided the Buckeyes to a .413 team hitting percentage, assisting on over 90 percent of Ohio State’s 41 total kills.
The Buckeyes posted double-digit blocks for the third time in 2017, stuffing the Bulldogs a dozen times. Ohio State’s defensive dominance also included a 37-22 digs advantage, limiting Barton to a .106 team attacking rate. Driss Guessous registered six blocks in total and increased his career solo block number to 51, surpassing Daniel Mathews (2005-08) to move up into 11th place in school history. Four Buckeyes tallied six or more digs with Ryan Genn corralling his seven digs in just two sets.
Set 1: Ohio State fell behind 10-7 before capturing 11 of the next 15 points to soar past the Bulldogs 18-14. Barton was not going to go away quietly though, grabbing the next three rallies and trimming the deficit to a lone tally at 18-17. Moments later an ace from freshman Andrew Hillman made for a 20-17 edge and the Buckeyes went on to close it out, 25-21.
Set 2: The second set was not so tightly-contested. A Szerszen kill opened the stanza and Ohio State never trailed. Szerszen would later add on the finishing touches, hooking up with Thomas for four consecutive kills to create a 24-14 set-point opportunity. Thomas then took care of business on his own, connecting for the set-clinching ace, 25-14.
<>bSet 3: Reese Devilbiss toed the service stripe 11 straight rallies during an 11-point Buckeye run which essentially slammed the door shut on the Bulldogs. Ohio State trailed 7-6 when the run began and owned a 17-7 stronghold by its conclusion. The final nail came in the form of a 25-17 ledger.
A Top-5 clash awaits Ohio State Saturday night, playing host to the fourth-ranked 49ers of Long Beach State.
Free admission. Free parking. Free fun.
🏆 Men's Volleyball White House Visit
Pete Hanson - Hall of Fame Weekend
Path to Title Defense Mapped Out