Buckeyes Win in Five-Set Thriller over Hoosiers, 3-2
Taylor Sandbothe totaled seven kills vs. Indiana.
COLUMBUS, Ohio - The No. 12 Ohio State women's volleyball team clinched a 3-2 (25-23, 20-25, 25-19, 17-25, 17-15) victory vs. Indiana Saturday in Bloomington, Ind. The Buckeyes improve to 14-2 on the season and 2-2 in the conference with the win.
Senior Kaitlyn Leary tabbed her eighth double-double of the season, collecting 22 kills and 11 digs on the evening as well as four block assists. Setter Taylor Sherwin posted 44 assists, while senior Julianne Mandolfo added a team-best 15 digs to the victory. Freshman Taylor Sandbothe totaled seven blocks (1s, 6a), while Erin Sekinger notched six blocks (1s, 5a).
Awele Nwaeze led the Hoosiers with 15 kills, totaling a .458 hitting percentage. Megan Tallman posted 48 assists, while Caitlin Hansen tallied a team-best 24 digs in the match.
Ohio State jumped out to a 4-1 lead to start the match, highlighted by back-to-back kills by Leary to set the tone for the Buckeye offense. A block by Katie Mitchell and Sekinger prompted a 5-3 run to give the squad a 13-7 lead. Indiana began to chip away at the Buckeye lead until a Hoosier kill knotted the score at 20-20. After an Ohio State timeout at the 24-23 mark, a kill by Taylor Sandbothe sealed the victory for the Buckeyes in the first set, 25-23.
The Buckeyes and Hoosiers exchanged points to begin the second set until Indiana posted a four-point run to take a 9-8 lead. Sekinger tallied a kill to tie the score at 9-9 before the home squad pushed ahead with three-point run to move to a 12-9 lead. A block assist by Sandbothe and Sekinger pulled the Buckeyes within one, 21-20. The Hoosiers responded with a four-point run to take the set, 25-20.
A service ace by freshman Maggie Heim gave the Buckeyes a 4-1 lead to start the third set. After an Ohio State error, the squad jumped to an 8-2 lead vs. the Hoosiers. Indiana compiled a 6-1 run to pull the score to 9-8. The Buckeyes began to surge again with a service ace by Julianne Mandolfo forcing a Hoosier timeout with Ohio State up 16-11. The Buckeyes continued to maintain a steady lead to hold on to a 25-19 lead in the third set.
A pair of service aces from Valeria Leon triggered a 5-0 start for the Buckeyes in the fourth set. The two Big Ten squads exchanged points until a three-point run by Indiana forced an Ohio State timeout with the Buckeyes trailing, 13-11. The Hoosiers notched a 4-1 run after a second Buckeye timeout to take a 22-14 lead in set four. Indiana claimed the fourth set, 25-17.
In the fifth set, the Buckeyes and Hoosiers exchanged points to see 11 tied scores to decide the match. A kill by Leary locked the score at 10-all, while Indiana responded with a two-point run to move to a 12-10 lead in the set. A kill by Sherwin knotted the sore again at 13-13, followed by a Sekinger block to bring the Buckeyes within match point, 14-13. Indiana rallied to tie the score again at 15-all until the Buckeyes clinched following back-to-back Hoosier errors, 17-15.