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Ohio State men’s volleyball takes 2 against conference opponents

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Redshirt-junior opposite Andrew Lutz attempts to serve the ball during a match against Ball State Feb. 26 at St. John Arena. OSU lost, 3-1.  Credit: Kathleen Martini / Oller reporter

Redshirt-junior opposite Andrew Lutz attempts to serve the ball during a match against Ball State Feb. 26 at St. John Arena. OSU lost, 3-1.
Credit: Kathleen Martini / Oller reporter

After five consecutive losses, the Ohio State men’s volleyball team finally got out of its slump, pulling out a pair home wins against Quincy and Lindenwood this weekend.

Junior outside hitter Michael Henchy said the five losses motivated the team to work much harder in practice, which helped them bring home two wins.

“Our most recent practices have been our most successful, and I think that our losses have made us work much harder,” Henchy said.

The Buckeyes (10-13, 6-6) ended their weekend with a second victory this season against Lindenwood in St. Charles, Mo., 3-2.

Henchy led the Buckeyes with a season-high 19 kills and added 12 digs, while redshirt-freshman middle blocker Driss Guessous finished second on the team with 14 kills of his own.

Junior middle blocker Dustan Neary said concentration was a main contributor to the team’s wins this weekend.

“We have had a lot of trouble focusing all of our attention on the match — this weekend I definitely saw a change in that, which I think made a huge impact on the outcome,” Neary said.

The Buckeyes started off their alumni weekend with a 3-1 win against Quincy in Quincy, Ill., Friday.

Nearly notched a career-best seven blocks, while Henchy finished with 11 kills and five block assists. Redshirt-junior opposite Andrew Lutz led the team with 12 kills and added nine digs, and Guessous had five blocks.

With the season winding down and the Men’s Intercollegiate Volleyball Association Championships quickly approaching — it is set to begin April 18 — the Buckeyes need all the wins they can get to help with the seeding of the tournament.

Coach Pete Hanson said if the Buckeyes win their remaining two league matches of the season against Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne and Loyola, they have a chance to be placed fourth going into the conference tournament.

He added that the team is not focused on the tournament right now and still has a couple of matches remaining in the season before it can start preparing.

“We are not looking that far ahead, we have to get through these matches one at a time. Thinking ahead to the tournament is a distraction when preparing for the next match,” Hanson said.

OSU is next slated to take on IPFW Friday at 7 p.m.

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