NCAA women's volleyball: Ohio State knocks off No. 8 Wisconsin in five sets
MADISON, Wis. – The Ohio State women’s volleyball team erased a 2-0 deficit and rallied to take down No. 8 Wisconsin in a heart-pounding five-set thriller (14-25, 16-25, 25-21, 25-23, 15-13) at UW Field House on Friday night. The Buckeyes (13-11, 6-7 B1G) knocked off the Badgers (15-7, 6-7 B1G) for the first time since 2015.
Luisa Schirmer posted her seventh double-double of the season (14 kills, 10 digs). Ashley Wenz had 15 kills and seven digs. The outside hitter attacked .325 overall and .428 during the Buckeyes’ three-set comeback. Ayanna Swan chipped in 11 kills. Taylor Hughes handed out 43 assists and paired it with 10 digs for her ninth double-double.
Defensively, middle blocker Lauren Witte tied her career-high of nine blocks (8a, 1s) while Hughes and Wenz had five blocks apiece. Ana Beatriz Franklin set new career marks with 15 digs and five assists.
SETS 1-2: Wisconsin led for the entirety of sets one (25-14) and two (25-16) to go up 2-0 in the match despite a 5-0-6 attacking stat line for Swan in the second.
SET 3: The OSU offense began to click in the third. Wenz accounted for six kills, attacking .600 for the set. As a team, Ohio State connected on 18-of-40 error-free swings for a .450 clip. Locked at 13-all, the Buckeyes strung together three points to regain the lead. Wisconsin needed to burn a timeout as they trailed 22-18. The Scarlet & Gray was able to hold off the Badgers for a 25-21 triumph.
SET 4: The two teams traded points early on in the fourth. Witte joined Wenz and Swan at the net on three consecutive blocks for an 18-14 advantage, which sent Wisconsin to its bench. The Badgers pulled within one, 23-22, to keep things tight but an error and kill by Schirmer closed out the period, 25-23.
SET 5: Ohio State never trailed during the decisive fifth set. The Buckeyes and Badgers went point-for-point, which resulted in eight ties. Back-to-back kills from Schirmer gave the Buckeyes some room at 11-9. Wisconsin responded with three kills to chip away at the lead, 13-12. An OSU error helped the score even out at 13-13. Wenz put the ball down hard before she teamed up with Witte at the net to complete the rally, 15-13.