WVB: Penn State Stays Undefeated in B1G Play, Knocks off OSU 3-0
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa.—As the crowd decked themselves out in pink to honor Breast Cancer Awareness, the #9 Nittany Lions managed defeat #19 Ohio State, coming away with a 3-0 (25-21, 25-20, 25-17) win in front of 2,779 at Rec Hall.
The first set was a see-saw affair that saw both teams with chances to pull away. Both teams traded points throughout the early part of the set, with 8 ties and 5 lead changes.
After a timeout on the floor with Penn State up 15-14 in the set, head coach Russ Rose talked about what he told his team at that point in the the game.
“Ohio State’s really good… It was a game where both teams were hitting at a high percentage,” Rose said. “We made less errors and that’s what enabled us to win the game.”
Following the timeout, the Lions were able to pull away. Behind 7 kills from Simone Lee and 14 assists from junior setter Abby Detering, Penn State took the first set 25-21.
In the second set, the Nittany Lions found things a bit smoother. Ali Frantti led the way with 4 kills in the set. Penn State opened up a 3-0 lead before Ohio State rallied and the set went back and forth early until the Lions opened up a 9-4 lead.
The Buckeyes would only get within 4 through the remainder of the set, with Penn State winning the second set 25-20. With 3 blocks, freshman middle hitter Tori Gorrell also set the pace for the team.
The third set felt more like a formality as Penn State had very little trouble dispatching the Buckeyes in the last frame. It was announced prior to the game that both coaches would have the ability to challenge official rulings, a first for Penn State volleyball. While not utilized in the first two sets, both coaches challenged rulings in the third, with Geoff Carlston of Ohio State using 3 challenges, while Rose used one.
Only one call of the four that were initially challenged ended up being overturned, but they impacted the final set, allowing for stoppages in play.
“I think we saw some of the downsides of it,” Rose said. “It can be used as a timeout. It’s the first time we’ve had it in play and I think it will take some time to iron out the kinks of it.”
Overall, junior outside hitter Simone Lee led the Nittany Lions with 12 kills, freshman defensive specialist Kendall White had 8 digs and Abby Detering notched 34 assists to lead the team statistically on the evening.
For Ohio State, senior middle hitter Taylor Sandbothe had 15 kills and sophomore setter Taylor Hughes had 27 assists to lead the Buckeyes.
Up next for Penn State, the team embarks on a conference road trip. They take on #22 Michigan in Ann Arbor on Friday night before traveling to Wisconsin and Minnesota next week. Their next home game is Friday, November 4 at 7 p.m., when they take on the Nebraska Cornhuskers.
Zach Kaplan is a freshman majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email firstname.lastname@example.org.