Sept. 30, 2017
Box Scoren | PDF Box: MSU 3, OSU 0
WATCH: Highlights vs. Ohio State
No. 16 Michigan State volleyball team completed its first home weekend of the Big Ten season with a 3-0 sweep of visiting Ohio State (25-13, 25-18, 25-17). MSU is now 11-2 and a perfect 4-0 in Big Ten play, while Ohio State falls to 9-6 and 2-2 in Big Ten matches.
The win, along with a 3-2 comeback win for No. 8 Nebraska over Wisconsin, sets up a battle of the Big Ten's two unbeatens on Wednesday when the Spartans travel to Nebraska for a match that will air live on Big Ten Network. The Huskers beat Minnesota 3-0 on Friday before rallying from a 2-0 deficit on Saturday night to defeat the Badgers.
The Spartans were in control from wire to wire, spreading their offense and hitting better than .400 in the first and final sets to seal their sixth consecutive victory, the longest active winning streak in the Big Ten. Brooke Kranda led all scorers with 14 kills, hitting .345 and adding an ace and a pair of blocks. Autumn Bailey just missed a double-double with 13 kills and nine digs, adding a solo block and a pair of service aces while hitting .440.
No Spartan with at least one attempt hit lower than .308 in the match, and four players hit .400 or better. Holly Toliver hit .471 with nine kills and four digs.
No Buckeyes got to double-digit kills; Ashley Wenx had nine kills and a pair of blocks to lead her team, while Luisa Schirmer had six kills, five digs, and two blocks. Madison Smeathers had three blocks and five kills while hitting .571, as the Buckeyes had more blocks than MSU (5-4). The Spartans, however, led in kills (48-30), digs (37-26), and aces (5-0).
Rachel Minarick's 38 assists pushed her career total to 3,790. She moved past Christie Landry (3,761) and Courtney DeBolt (3,773) to take over third place on MSU's all-time career assist list.
" I like that our players seem to be in a very good space - we're a mature team and there's a good example being set by our upperclassmen. They have been through the rigors of a Big Ten season and are setting an excellent tone and are using their previous experiences to shape how we're attacking every match this season. We may bend but haven't broken - we've made some good adjustments and are really getting so much from our senior class. This is setting us up for a really big week next week when we play Nebraska and Wisconsin, and I think our players are really excited for that challenge."
- Head Coach Cathy George
Autumn Bailey had 13 kills and nine digs, hititng .440 and adding a pair of aces and a solo block.
Brooke Kranda had a match-high 14 kills and had a pair of blocks.
Holly Toliver had nine kills and hit better than .470 for the second straight match, adding two assists, our digs, and a block.
Rachel Minarick finished with 38 assists, two aces, and seven digs.
Rachel Minarick moved into third place all-time at MSU with 3,790 in her career.
STATS AND STORYLINES
The Spartans own the longest active winning streak in the Big Ten (six games).
MSU allowed the Buckeyes just 48 points, the second-fewest points allowed in a match this season. MSU allowed just 44 vs. Furman in the season opener, and also allowed 48 to San Diego State.
Ten of MSU's 11 wins have been in three sets, including three straight. The Wisconsin match was a five-set victory.
Between the second and third sets, Chloe Reinig's All-American banner was unveiled in the Jenison Field House rafters. She was an Honorable Mention All-American in 2014 and graduated last spring.
GAME REPLAY SET ONE: The teams each called for a challenge in the first six points of the match, but both went MSU's way as the team raced out to an 11-4 lead. The Spartans just continued its slow, methodical approach, going up eight (16-8) and eventually 11 (20-9). As it has in recent games, the Spartans took care of their own business, posting four service aces and gathering 14 kills in the frame. A kill by Megan Tompkins got the Spartans to set point at 24-13, and Toliver powered an out-of-system ball across the net and to the floor for the first-set victory. The MSU offense was also distributed evenly - four players had three kills each and the Spartans hit .407 (14-3-27) and limited the Buckeyes to .167 (.8-4-24). The Buckeyes did out-block the Spartans in the frame by a 2-0 margin.
SET TWO: MSU was up as many as four points early in the second set (10-6), and Ohio State called its second time out with MSU leading 16-9. The Buckeyes came back with a block and a kill to trim it to 17-11, but MSU never allowed the visitors to get closer than three points and closed out a 25-18 win in the frame. The Spartans recorded their first two blocks of the match, nd got six kills and a block by Kranda along with an ace to pace the offense. Toliver had four kills on six swings as well as MSU hit .265, and the Buckeyes hit .207.
SET THREE: The teams battled to a 7-7- tie, but a 3-0 MSU run make OSU call its first time out trailing 10-7. Back-to-back kills by Kranda and a line shot by Autumn Bailey gave MSU its largest lead to that point of the set at 15-10. The Buckeyes cut it down to two at 15-13, but a Bailey tool off the block and Kranda kill pushed it back out to a four-point advantage. The Spartans got to set point at 23-17 on a 6-3 run, and Autumn Bailey sealed the win with back-to-back kills to finish it off. The Spartans hit .533 in the final frame (18-2-30), led by Bailey's seven kills and Kranda's six.