(ISN) – ST. CHARLES, Mo. – Sophomore setter Christy Blough returned to the court after a four-match hiatus to steer the Ohio State offense in a .411 (50-13-90) attacking showcase. Blough scattered 43 assists as the Buckeyes put away 50 kills in the pivotal conference victory. Ohio State (18-6, 8-3 MIVA) swept past Lindenwood (11-9, 6-7 MIVA) in three sets – 25-19, 25-23, 26-24.
The Buckeyes have won each of six meetings versus Lindenwood all-time following 3-0 sweeps in both clashes this season.
Senior captain Michael Henchy shined the brightest, totaling 16 kills at a .538 pace (16-2-26) with six digs and a pair of service aces. He had several co-stars on the night, including Miles Johnson and his five aces. Driss Guessous had himself a nice evening as well, terminating 10 of 14 attempts and sending back three Lion attacks for blocks. Blough powered an offensive onslaught which produced hitting efficiencies of .400 or better in all three sets.
Blough spread out the love in set number one, teeing up multiple kills for six different teammates. The first 10 points were split before Ohio State seized 11 of the next 16 to open up a six-point gap at 16-10. That distance withstood time and remained in a 25-19 final tally.
Despite some statistical imbalances in the second set, Ohio State found itself trailing 22-20 late in the frame. Three consecutive kills from Henchy followed, however, to regain the Buckeye edge. He accumulated 10 put-aways in the second stanza alone, and OSU escaped 25-23 victors. Four team blocks went a long way in neutralizing a half dozen service blunders from the Buckeyes.
The two teams exchanged fireworks in the third frame, both attacking above .420 and each mustering just seven digs. Ohio State held a slim advantage for most of the set but couldn’t quite shake the Lions in the standard 25 points. Lindenwood locked it up at 24-all before back-to-back Buckeye kills finally closed the door and secured win number 18 on the season for Ohio State.