The No. 2 Ohio State men’s volleyball team (26-2, 15-0 MIVA) beat both Lindenwood University and Quincy University on Friday and Saturday, closing out the regular season and staying perfect in Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association play.
OSU is only the second team in 25 years to go undefeated in MIVA action. The last time the MIVA saw a perfect conference record was in 2014 when Loyola University, Chicago went 14-0.
On Saturday, the Buckeyes traveled to face the Lindenwood Lions (5-18, 4-12 MIVA) where they won in straight sets, 25-17, 25-15, 25-19.
Defensively, the Lions struggled to maintain OSU’s offensive efforts. The Lions had only 9 digs through three sets of action. The Buckeyes, on the other hand, tallied 19 digs as a team.
The Buckeyes hit over .400 during the night with junior outside hitter Nicolas Szerszen and senior opposite hitter Miles Johnson combining for 24 kills in the match. OSU also performed well at the service line with Szerszen and redshirt sophomore middle blocker Blake Leeson both serving four aces a piece.
Despite OSU’s high attacking efficiency, the Lions stuffed the Buckeyes on six occasions. Lindenwood’s sophomore Connor Hipelius led the team with four block assists for the night.
After taking care of business at Lindenwood, the Buckeyes traveled to Quincy University for the regular-season finale, taking the match in four sets (25-16, 25-27, 25-15, 25-12) against the Hawks (7-21, 2-14 MIVA).
After never trailing in the first set, the Buckeyes went down 22-16 in the second frame before erasing that deficit with a 7-0 run. OSU ultimately dropped the set in extra points.
Aside from the second set, the Buckeyes were hitting above .300, with a match high of .533 in the third set. Quincy’s best attacking efficiency came in the third set as well at .206.
In sophomore setter Sanil Thomas’ second start of the season, he assisted on 43 kills and led the team with 11 digs. He helped both Szerszen and junior Maxime Hervoir rack up 17 kills each.
With the regular season wrapped up, the MIVA Tournament seeding is locked in. OSU has the top seed, which means that the Buckeyes will have home-court advantage for the duration of the tournament.
The Buckeyes start MIVA Tournament action on Saturday when they face Quincy again. First serve is set at 5 p.m. in St. John Arena.