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Feb. 5, 2014
Redshirt junior Nick Goodell fueled the Penn State offense with a season-high 20 kills on .533 attacking. He also added a season-best four aces to go along with three digs and three blocks. Junior Aaron Russell and senior Peter Russell also registered double-digit kills, notching 16 and 10, respectively. Aaron continued his stellar performance from the service line, tallying a career-high five aces, as well as seven digs.
Redshirt sophomore Taylor Hammond dished out 47 assists, pacing the Nittany Lions to .308 hitting. Redshirt freshman Matt Callaway recorded his seventh consecutive multi-block performance, anchoring the defense with a career high seven blocks, including three solo stuffs, while also logging seven kills.
Holding on to a one-point lead, 5-4, early in the first set, the Buckeyes used a 5-1 streak to take control of a three-point advantage, 9-6. Rallying, the Nittany Lions answered with a 5-2 run to knot the frame, 11-all. The Buckeyes came out of the break with three unanswered points to move ahead by three, 14-11, forcing Penn State to call a time out. Goodell cut off the streak with a kill, but Ohio State continued to maintain the lead, 16-13. Goodell and Peter answered back with a pair of consecutive kills to trim the lead to one, 16-15, but OSU used a 4-1 strike to regain a 20-16 advantage.
Rallying once again, Penn State put together a 6-2 run to tie the stanza, 22-22. Regrouping, OSU connected on a kill to get back on top, 23-22, but Seifert and Aaron pounded two back-to-back kills put the Lions up, 24-23. The Buckeyes rebounded with two consecutive kills to recapture the lead, 25-24, but Penn State held off the threat, closing out the set on a 5-2 run, capped off with an ace from Peter and a kill from Goodell.
Trailing by two in the second set, 7-5, Ohio State used a 5-1 strike to extend the lead to five, 12-7. Penn State followed with a kill from Goodell and an ace from Aaron to cut the advantage to three, 12-9. The Buckeyes rebounded with a 5-2 run to secure a six-point lead, 17-11. Recovering, the Nittany Lions used a 7-1 run to tie the set, 18-18. Unable to break away, the Buckeyes used a 6-3 stretch to arrive at set-point, 24-21. Goodell held off the attempt with a kill, but another OSU kill locked up a 25-22 win in favor of the Buckeyes.
Ohio State jumped out to an early 5-1 advantage in the third set before Goodell put an end the streak with a kill. Penn State continued to chip away at the lead, moving within two, 9-7, before opening up on a 5-1 run to go ahead by one, 12-11. OSU answered with four unanswered points to take back the lead, forcing the Nittany Lions to call a timeout.
The two clubs continued to keep it tight, 18-16, until the Buckeyes constructed a 4-1 strike to pull away by as many as four, 22-17. Refusing to go away, Penn State followed with a 6-0 run to claim a narrow one-point lead, 23-22. Looking to close out the frame, Ohio State capitalized on two PSU attack errors to arrive at set-point, 24-23.
The set was far from over though, as the Nittany Lions and the Buckeyes battled through five more ties before Callaway moved Penn State ahead by one with a kill, 29-28. OSU answered with a kill to knot the set for the sixth time, but Aaron and Peter teamed up for back-to-back kills to seal a 31-29 win in the third set.
Penn State shot out to a 6-2 start in the fourth set, causing the Buckeyes to call an early timeout. State managed to shave the lead back to four, 8-4, but PSU outscored the Buckeyes 6-4 to move ahead by as many as six, 14-8. From there, the Nittany Lions continued to roll, using a 5-2 streak to surge ahead by nine, 19-10. Unable to get back on top, the Buckeyes scored just five more points as Penn State cruised to a 25-15 win in the fourth frame, capped off by back-to-back kills from Goodell.
Next up, the Nittany Lions will jump right back into action, hosting Erskine and Pfeiffer in a pair of non-conference matchups this weekend. Penn State takes on the Flying Fleet Friday, Feb. 7 at 7 p.m. in main gym before squaring off against the Falcons Saturday, Feb. 8 at 7 p.m. in south gym.