April 6, 2013
CHICAGO, Ill. - Facing its second-straight ranked opponent on the road, the No. 11 Ohio State men's volleyball team dropped a 3-0 (20-25, 23-25, 26-28) match at No. 13 Loyola-Chicago in a MIVA matchup. The Buckeyes fell to 17-7 overall and 7-5 in the league.
Redshirt senior John Tholen led the squad with season-best 11 kills, finishing with a .733 attack percentage. Middle blocker Grayson Overman had a match-high seven blocks (1s,6a), while senior Nick Gibson finished with eight kills.
The Ramblers (18-8, 9-3) had three student-athletes with double-digit kills. Joseph Smalzer and Thomas Jaeschke had 15 apiece, while Cody Caldwell finished with 12. Smalzer totaled seven service aces in the match, while Caldwell had a match-high 10 digs.
Loyola opened with a 4-2 lead to start the first and pushed ahead for an 11-7 advantage. A kill by Tholen triggered a four-point Buckeye run to lock the score at 12 before the Ramblers responded with a 3-0 run for a 15-12 lead. Another three-point Loyola rally forced a Buckeye timeout at 21-16 and the home squad closed out the set with a 25-20 win.
Three-straight kills by Caldwell led to an early 3-1 advantage for the Ramblers. The Buckeyes closed the gap with a pair of two-point rallies and a Tholen/Gibson block gave Ohio State a 7-6 lead. After exchanging points, Loyola utilized strong play behind Smalzer to earn a 12-10 lead. Kills by Gibson and Tholen cut the Rambler lead to one a 20-19, but the Buckeyes were unable to forge ahead as Loyola took the set, 25-23.
After falling behind early in set three, a kill by Overman led to a 5-1 Buckeye run to lock it up at 10 apiece. Back-to-back Rambler errors gave Ohio State its first lead of the set at 14-12 and the squad held on to its slim margin throughout the middle of the set. Loyola used a two-point run to regain the lead at 21-20 and faced match point twice before sealing the win with a 28-26 victory.
Ohio State closes out the regular season at home, hosting Quincy in a pair of MIVA matches April 12-13 in St. John Arena. Both matches are set for 7 p.m. ET and admission is free. Ohio State will honor its seven seniors prior to the match on the 13th.