No. 15 Ohio State Opens MIVA Schedule on the Road
Jan. 22, 2014
COLUMBUS, Ohio - The No. 15 Ohio State men's volleyball team takes to the road this weekend for a pair of MIVA conference matches. The Buckeyes will face Quincy Friday, Jan. 24, at 8 p.m. ET in Quincy, Ill., and follow with another 8 p.m. ET match at Lindenwood Saturday, Jan. 25.
Friday, January 24 - 8 p.m. ET
No. 15 Ohio State Buckeyes (2-3) at Quincy Hawks (2-1)
Saturday, January 25 - 8 p.m. ET
No. 15 Ohio State at Lindenwood Lions (1-1)
LEES-MCRAE, GEORGE MASON RECAP
The No. 15 Ohio State men's volleyball team opened its home schedule, Jan. 17-18, with back-to-back sweeps of Lees-McRae and George Mason in St. John Arena. The Buckeyes notched a three-set win over Lees-McRae Friday (25-12, 25-12, 25-14), and followed with another three-set sweep (25-23, 25-22, 25-19) over George Mason Saturday.
Redshirt junior opposite Andrew Lutz led the Buckeyes in kills with 27 and recorded four blocks (0s, 4a). Junior outside hitter Michael Henchy notched 17 kills along with eight digs, while redshirt freshman middle blocker Driss Guessous chipped in 16 kills and six blocks (2s, 4a). Senior libero Danny Baker totaled a team-best 18 digs while redshirt junior setter Peter Heinen added 68 assists and 11 digs.
Andrew Lutz was named this week's MIVA Offensive Player of the Week, the league announced Tuesday. The honor is the first of the season and of his career.
Lutz led the Buckeyes with a 4.50 kills per set average on the weekend. Against Lees-McRae Friday night in St. John Arena, the junior opposite hit a solid .409 and totaled 11 kills on 22 attempts with just two errors. He added two service aces in the three-set win.
In the team's 3-0 victory over George Mason Saturday, Lutz notched a season-high 16 kills against the Patriots. With three block assists, Lutz set a season-best in points with 17.5 on the night.
Overall, Lutz leads the team with a 3.33 kills per set average and ranks fourth overall in the MIVA. His 3.93 points average ranks third in the league.
BUCKEYES IN THE MIVA
In its 46th season in the league, the Ohio State men's volleyball program has an impressive 392-98 overall record in the Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association (MIVA). The Buckeyes have captured a conference-best 24 regular season titles and 14 MIVA Tournament championships. Overall, Ohio State has produced 20 MIVA player of the year awards and has garnered 172 all-MIVA selections
Under head coach Pete Hanson, Ohio State is 248-76 and has won 15 regular season titles over Hanson's 29 seasons. He has been named the conference's coach of the year 11 times and has guided the team to 10 MIVA tournament crowns.
IN THE POLLS
Ohio State enters the weekend as the 15th-ranked team in the AVCA Division I-II Coaches Top 15 preseason poll. The team is one of four MIVA schools ranked as Loyola ranks No. 2, Lewis is No. 11 and IPFW stands at No. 14.
2014 OHIO STATE BUCKEYES
The Scarlet and Gray are led by a quartet of juniors in Michael Henchy, Andrew Lutz, Peter Heinen and Shawn Herron. Henchy and Heinen have been consistent contributors since their freshmen campaigns, while Lutz secured a starting role last season. Herron gained valuable experience his redshirt freshman year and is a big blocker for the Buckeyes. Adding depth and experience are the team's three seniors in Danny Baker, Michael Piechowski and Jonathan Newton.
A handful of Ohio State newcomers have seen significant playing time early this year. Redshirt freshman Driss Guessous has started all five matches at middle blocker and has a team-best 14 blocks on the season. Freshman outside hitter Gabriel Domecus has also started all five matches and is third on the team with 19 digs, while classmate setter Christy Blough made three starts in Hawai'i and has an 8.71 assists average. Freshman Miles Johnson has started two matches and played in all five for the Buckeyes at outside hitter and redshirt freshman Alex Judkins has seen playing time in three matches.
The Quincy Hawks are coached by Hadley Foster who is in his seventh season with the program. The Hawks have a 2-1 overall record and will open up conference play against the Buckeyes. Quincy was picked to finish eighth in the conference, concluding the 2013 season with a 10-21 overall record and 1-13 in MIVA play.
Sophomore outside hitter Ian Lawson leads the team in kills with 35 kills while classmate opposite hitter Jack Gamache has 27. Senior outside hitter Brian Peth has a team-best 30 digs and Gamache comes in second with 21. Freshman middle blocker Jarrod Kelso has 10 blocks (4s, 6a).
The Buckeyes lead the series over the Hawks 45-2 with the Buckeyes on a three-match winning streak. The two squads met last season with back-to-back meetings in St. John Arena. Ohio State picked up a pair of sweeps (25-14, 25-16, 25-15) and (25-22, 25-21, 25-23) to close out the regular season.
The Lindenwood Lions are coached by Kris Dorn who is in his second year with the program. The Hawks hold a 1-1 record after opening up their season with a 0-3 loss to Sacred Heart and followed by a 3-1 win over NJIT. The Lions were picked to finish seventh in the MIVA after posting a 19-12 overall record and a 5-9 mark in conference play.
The Hawks are led offensively by senior outside hitter Michael Adams and junior Collin Hackworth who both have 19 kills apiece. Senior defensive specialist Davis Poole leads in digs with 12 and Hackworth has a team best eight blocks (0s, 8a).
Ohio State leads the series between the two squads 2-0 since play began in 2013. The two teams first met January of 2013 at Lindenwood with Ohio State posting two back-to-back sweeps over the weekend (25-14, 25-22, 25-22) and (25-21, 25-23, 25-20).
Buckeyes Michael Henchy and Driss Guessous earned the opportunity to don the Red, White and Blue this summer, representing the United States at the FIVB Men's U-21 World Championship held Aug. 22-Sept. 1 in Ankara and Izmir, Turkey.
The pair was selected from a field of 22 in late June to the final 12-player roster. A familiar face was at the helm of the program in Ohio State's own head coach Pete Hanson and Buckeye assistant Sean Byron also served the same capacity for Team USA.
Team USA struggled a bit throughout the tournament and finished the 20-team championship in 11th overall. Despite leaving Turkey without a medal, Team USA did leave on a high note with a three-set win over rival Canada.
MIVA PRESEASON POLL
The Ohio State men's volleyball was chosen to finish third in the Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association by a vote of the league coaches. The Buckeyes return three starters from last year's squad that finished tied for third in the league with a 9-5 record.
The 2012 MIVA Tournament champion and regular season co-champion Loyola was voted as the conference favorite with 62 points and seven first place votes. Lewis was picked to finish second with 57 points and one first place vote. Ohio State came in third with 47 points.
Junior outside hitter Michael Henchy was selected to the MIVA Preseason All-Conference team. The Ventura, Calif., product started in 25 matches for the Buckeyes last season and finished second on the squad with 301 kills and a 3.34 kills average. He was selected to the 2013 MIVA All-Conference first team and also earned preseason honors last year.
The 2013 Buckeyes finished the season with a 19-8 mark and concluded MIVA play tied for third in the league at 9-5. Ohio State hosted the first round of the MIVA Tournament and fell in five sets to Grand Canyon. The squad came in ranked No. 15 in the final AVCA poll.
Four student-athletes earned All-MIVA honors at the end of the season. Junior Michael Henchy and former Buckeye Brennan Anderson were placed on the first team, while junior Andrew Lutz and former Buckeye John Tholen were honored on the second team.
Ohio State said goodbye to seven seniors last year, including experienced middle blockers Tholen and Grayson Overman.
HEAD COACH PETE HANSON
The Buckeyes are led by head coach Pete Hanson, who is in his 30th year with the program. He has guided the Buckeyes to 15 MIVA regular season titles, including the six straight from 2007-2012. Under his direction, Ohio State captured its first NCAA Division I-II title in 2011 as the squad defeated UC Santa Barbara in five sets.
The Buckeyes have totaled 18 20-win seasons with Hanson and have reached the NCAA Championships 10 times. Hanson is 583-308 overall at Ohio State in his 29 seasons and boasts a 248-76 record against MIVA opponents.
Ohio State continues its road swing, traveling No. 2 Loyola-Chicago, Feb. 1. The Buckeyes and the Ramblers will face off at 5 p.m. ET in Chicago.
My Gameday - Nicolas Szerszen