Oct. 20, 2012
EAST LANSING, Mich. - Michigan State volleyball lost a hard fought match to No. 20 Ohio State (15-7, 6-4 Big Ten) at Jenison Field House, 3-1. The Spartans (16-6, 4-6) captured the opening set, 26-24, but dropped the next three by scores of 22-25, 23-25, and 22-25. Junior outside hitter Lauren Wicinski paced MSU with 29 kills and had a .323 hitting percentage.
"We made some critical errors when it was tied at 22-22 and we've got to make sure that we are playing smart and solid at those times," head coach Cathy George said. "Ohio State forced themselves upon us and we didn't respond the way we needed to at crucial times."
MSU started hot and jumped out to a 6-1 lead in the first set after a service ace from Lauren Wicinski. Ohio State was able to close the margin and evened the game 16-16. The opening set featured nine tie scores but just two lead changes. MSU trailed 21-22 after an attack error and used its first timeout. Taylor Galloway notched her fourth kill of the set to put MSU ahead 24-23 and Ohio State responded with a timeout of its own. Wicinski had her eighth kill for MSU and a Buckeyes attack error sealed the first set for the Spartans.
Michigan State dropped set two, 25-22, and the Buckeyes hit .516 percent while MSU had a .250 mark. Ohio State turned the tables on MSU and started quick and had an 8-3 lead, forcing an early Michigan State timeout. The Spartans were down 23-18 and later fended off three OSU set points before Emily Danks notched her seventh kill of the night and the Buckeyes tied the match 1-1.
OSU took a 2-1 match lead with a 23-25 win in game three that featured 13 ties and seven lead changes. OSU took control leading 21-18 and the Spartans used a timeout. Kelsey Kuipers and Jazmine White combined for a block to make it 23-20 and a kill from Alexis Mathews made it 24-22 but MSU couldn't take the lead and OSU took the game.
Set four started off as a back-and-forth affair and MSU took an 11-10 lead after two straight kills from Lauren Wicinski. MSU then fell behind 15-13 and used its first timeout. Halle Peterson and Wicinski each recorded kills for MSU and were behind 19-17 late in game four. Wicinski strung together three kills for the Spartans and she had 10 in the fourth set but a couple of attack errors by the Spartans gave OSU the game and a 3-1 victory.
The Spartans hit just .200 in the match while the Buckeys had a mark of .348. Kristen Kelsay had 22 assists for the Spartans and Kori Moster recorded 17 digs. Wicinski had four service aces to go along with her 29 kills.
Up next, Michigan State will travel to face Indiana on Friday, Oct. 26 and Purdue on Saturday, Oct. 27.