The Ohio State women’s volleyball team (14-13, 7-9 Big Ten) lost 3-1 in a tight match against Iowa (17-12, 6-10 Big Ten) on Saturday night. This game broke the Hawkeyes’ 15-match losing streak against Ohio State and gave Iowa its first win against the Buckeyes since 2008.
The second set proved to be the most successful for the Buckeyes as they led the entire set with a .324 hitting percentage, their best in any set. Senior outside hitter Ashley Wenz led the set with four kills, while sophomore outside hitter Bia Franklin and sophomore middle blocker Madison Smeathers were responsible for two blocks each. With a total of 16 kills and three blocks, the Buckeyes won the set 25-22.
The rest of the match did not go according to plan for Ohio State. Although both teams went back and forth in the first set with six ties and three lead changes, the Buckeyes fell behind 20-17. Wenz contributed eight kills on 14 error-free attempts, but Iowa came away with a 25-18 victory.
The Buckeyes started the third set with a 7-1 run, but Iowa eventually caught up and tied the game at 22. Senior outside hitter Luisa Schirmer put away nine kills in the set, but it was not enough to match the Hawkeyes’ energy as they took the set 25-22.
The fourth and final set came to a 14-14 tie with a kill by Wenz. Iowa quickly regained the lead with two kills and two attack errors from the Buckeyes. Although Ohio State caught up and tied the it at 21, Iowa won the set 25-23 with a final kill from its junior outside hitter Taylor Louis.
Freshman setter Becca Mauer had a career night, recording career-highs with 51 assists and five kills. Franklin also played a strong game with a career-best three solo blocks, 11 digs and six kills.
The Buckeyes return to St. John Arena at 6 p.m. Friday for a game against Nebraska.