COLUMBUS, Ohio --The No. 6 UC Irvine Anteaters (15-6) handed No. 1 Ohio State (19-1) its first NCAA loss in nearly 400 days, departing St. John Arena with a straight-sets victory (28-26, 25-19, 25-20) to snap the Buckeyes' 42-match winning streak. Thirty-five digs and eight blocks from the Anteaters stymied the OSU attack, limiting the Buckeyes to a .222 team hitting percentage.
Ohio State strung together a 42-match winning streak, the MIVA's all-time longest and tied for the third-best in NCAA history (UCLA set the all-time record of 47 straight in both 1979-80 and 1983-85; and 42 in 1981-83)
Also marks the longest winning streak in OSU Athletics history for teams competing in head-to-head competition
The Buckeyes last suffered an NCAA loss on February 6, 2016 (399 days)
Ohio State won 126 of 152 sets (83%) during the victorious stretch
The streak included six wins over Top-5 opponents and 18 against teams ranked inside the Top-12
Also included in the streak are 18 straight wins in true road matches (last loss in an opponent's home gym came in '15)
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Maxime Hervoir buried 11 kills at a .500 attacking rate, adding in three block assists and two service aces for a 14.5 points total.
Set 1: Six lead changes and 16 tied scores infiltrated the opening frame, a back-and-forth affair which extended into extra points. Ohio State service victimized the Anteaters for four aces early on, leading to a 16-10 advantage. The serving success dried up quickly, however, as OSU committed four service gaffes from 22-22 on. Ohio State squandered a pair of set-point opportunities via off-the-mark serves and ultimately fell, 28-26. UC Irvine would not trail for the remainder of the evening.
Set 2: Despite another four-kill effort from Hervoir in the second, Ohio State failed to fully overcome several deficits throughout the set. The Buckeyes closed the gap to a lone point at 14-13 before an 11-6 Anteater run closed the door 25-19.
Set 3: UC Irvine continued to ball out defensively in the third, digging up 12 balls and stuffing a pair of Buckeye attack attempts. Nicolas Szerszen temporarily evened the score at 9-9 on a service ace, but UC Irvine snagged the next two tallies and maintained its upper hand to completion of a 25-20 clincher.
Ohio State looks to start a new streak next week with a pivotal jump back into conference play. The Buckeyes, atop the MIVA standings at 8-0, travel to the Windy City for matches versus league contenders Lewis (15-5, 9-2 MIVA) and Loyola (11-6, 6-3 MIVA). Ohio State faces No. 10 Loyola Thursday (March 16) before a Saturday night showdown at No. 5 Lewis. Both contests are set for 7 pm. CT/8 p.m. ET starts.
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