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‘Nightmare’ continues for Ohio State volleyball

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Sophomore middle blocker Andrea Kacsits defends a shot during a match against Nebraska Oct. 25 at St. John Arena. OSU lost, 3-1. Credit: Brandon Klein / Lantern photographer

Sophomore middle blocker Andrea Kacsits (4) defends a shot during a match against Nebraska Oct. 25 at St. John Arena. OSU lost, 3-1.
Credit: Brandon Klein / Lantern photographer

The Ohio State women’s volleyball team, which has now dropped six straight matches, hit the half way point of the conference season with a 2-8 record.
“We are not the team we were in this nightmare of a first half,” sophomore middle blocker Andrea Kacsits said. “We’ll be better in the second half (of the season) for sure.”
The No. 24 Buckeyes, who have not won since Oct. 5 at Indiana, dropped a 3-1 decision to No. 13 Nebraska Friday at St. John Arena.

“We need to remember what it feels like to win, and love that feeling enough to want to do it every time,” Kacsits said of the team’s recent struggles.

The Buckeyes looked strong early Friday, taking the first set 25-22, but were unable to build on that form the rest of the way.

Nebraska jumped out to a 12-4 lead over OSU in the second set, eventually winning it 25-12. The third ended 25-17 in favor of the Cornhuskers, and a late rally was not enough for OSU as they fell 25-19 in the final set.

The final period was close until the end, as the Buckeyes only trailed one point, 20-19, but five straight Nebraska points closed out the match.

Coach Geoff Carlston said his team can take positives from the match, but they still have work to do in the second half of Big Ten play.

“I thought some individuals played really well (against Nebraska),” Carlston said. “I think (we had) … the effort that we need to get better.”

Carlston has been working with multiple lineups during the losing streak, going with a two setter look against Nebraska as freshman Maggie Heim and junior Taylor Sherwin both saw significant playing time.

“It’s an option, something that I like components of,” Carlston said about the different look.

Heim finished with three kills and 14 assists while Sherwin tallied 24 assists.

Senior outside hitter Kaitlyn Leary led the Buckeyes with 12 kills, while Kacsits added eight of 14 attempts for an attack percentage of .500.

Senior outside hitter Kelsey Robinson led the match with 19 kills for Nebraska, while freshman outside hitter Kadie Rolfzen had 16 and sophomore middle blocker Meghan Haggerty added 10.

After the loss, the Buckeyes have a week to rest, with their next match scheduled for Friday against No. 10 Michigan State in East Lansing, Mich.

Leary said the second half of the season gives the Buckeyes a chance to see teams again and learn from their mistakes.

“The good thing about the Big Ten is you play everyone twice,” she said. “Now everyone knows the teams better, they know us better, we know them better.”

Carlston said the time off will help his team’s rhythm and give them a chance to get back on the same page.

“We’re going to take these days off, regroup, and really focus on the second half of the season,” he said.

After their match at Michigan State, the Buckeyes are scheduled to head to Ann Arbor, Mich., for a date with the No. 17 Michigan Wolverines.

 

Correction: Oct. 29, 2013
Andrea Kacsits’ name was initially spelled wrong in this article. It was been changed to reflect the correct spelling.

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