OXFORD, Miss. – The Ohio State women’s volleyball team split in the Rebel Invitational over the past weekend in Mississippi It swung the Buckeyes record to 4-1. In the first match they went the distance, battling every step of the way to outdo Southern Miss (3-1) for a 3-2 win (21-25, 25-20, 23-25, 27-25, 15-9) before falling flat against the Rebels of Ole Miss (4-1) in five sets (29-27, 17-25, 14-25, 25-22, 13-15) for the night.
The Buckeyes expunged a 2-1 deficit to maintain their first five-set victory of the season against Southern Miss in their opening match in the Rebel Invitational.
Three players computed double figures in kills – Mia Grunze (16), Vanja Bukilić (15) and Lauren Witte (12). Those marks were career highs for Grunze and Bukilić.
Olivia Dailey contributed 48 assists and seven digs while Jordan Fry tallied seven kills and four blocks. Defensively, Hannah Gruensfelder and Bia Franklin dug 14 and 12 balls, respectively. Franklin also had seven kills and Camry Halm had eight digs and two service aces.
The Ohio State Buckeyes dealt with 12 ties, four lead changes throughout the fourth and fifth sets on their path for the win.
Bukilić (15), Grunze (13) and Witte (10) led the offensive charge for the Buckeyes, combining for 38 of the team’s 54 kills. Dailey handed out 39 assists with eight digs. Halm added 17 digs, followed by Gruensfelder with 14. Fry and Witte both had four blocks while Witte, Halm and Becca Mauer serving two aces apiece,
The Ohio State University started the match with an extended rally that ended positively; on a 29-27 decision. The squad went on to trail Ole Miss, 2-1, eventually forcing a fifth set. The Buckeyes scored four unanswered points late in the fifth, which sent the Rebels to their bench. Unfortunately, for Buckeye Nation, it worked – producing a Rebel win.
The Ohio State women’s volleyball team closed out the Rebel Invitational on the plus side when they swept Samford (28-26, 25-19, 25-16) on Saturday afternoon. With the win, the Buckeyes improve to 5-1 on the season while the Bulldogs drop to 2-4 overall.
Lauren Witte and Vanja Bukilić both had their third straight match with double-digit kills. Witte had 13 kills and six blocks while Bukilić notched 10 daggers and a pair of service aces. Mia Grunze was just shy of the duo with nine kills and six digs.
Olivia Dailey handed out 37 assists, dug 11 balls, had three rejections and laid down two aces. Hannah Gruensfelder led the defense with 17 digs, followed by Camry Halm (15).
So the trip to Mississippi was a good trip; the loss to Ole Miss, of course, the lone blemish. The hopes of a complete sweep, whenever on the road, are always the goal. 6-0 looks better than 5-1. But, perhaps I’m whining too much about …. Well, nothing. It was, indeed, a good weekend for the women of The Ohio State University, and the Volleyball program.