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UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - No. 14 Penn State men's volleyball is set to square off against No. 1 Ohio State (6-0) Tue., Jan. 24 at 7:00 p.m. ET in St. John Arena.
PENN STATE VS. OHIO STATE
Penn State opened the 2017 season at Ohio State playing non-conference opponents UCLA and USC Jan. 6-7, respectively.
This will be the first time this season that Penn State faces the Buckeyes who are unblemished on the season sporting a perfect 6-0 record.
The Buckeyes are led by Nicolas Szerszen and Miles Johnson who this season have been among the best point producers in collegiate men's volleyball.
Szerszen ranks fourth nationally with 5.09 points per set while Johnson is ranked fifth averaging 5.03 points/set.
Penn State last defeated Ohio State Feb. 5, 2015 3-1.
PENN STATE IN THE NATIONAL RANKINGS
Penn State is currently ranked in the top-25 in five different team categories including top-10 rankings in Kills per Set - 12.08 (18th) and Digs per Set – 8.88 (10th).
Individually, Chris Nugent is ranked 19th in the nation in Points per Set (4.10) and 14th in the nation in Kills per Set (3.68), while Royce Clemens is fifth in the nation in Digs per Set averaging 2.80. Luke Braswell is 12th in the nation in Assists per Set averaging 10.08.
NITTANY LIONS 14TH IN LATEST AVCA POLL
Splitting the weekend against nationally ranked teams No. 9 Loyola and No. 8 Lewis, Penn State men's volleyball moved up one spot to No. 14 in the latest American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) poll.
Penn State (3-3) is coming off a weekend split with No. 9 Loyola and No. 8 Lewis in their first home games of the season.
Defending national champions Ohio State remained the number one team in the nation receiving all 24 first-place votes, followed by UCLA at No. 2, BYU at No. 3, Long Beach State at No. 4 and Hawai'i rounding out the top-five.
PAVLIK KNOWS HOW TO WIN
In his 23rd year at the helm of the program, head coach Mark Pavlik has amassed over 500 wins. Pavlik currently stands at 525-165 for his career.
FRESH FACES ON THE COURT IN 2017
The defending EIVA regular season champion men’s volleyball team returns a core group of eight letterwinners and four starters this year, while welcoming five freshmen to the roster.
The new additions include 6-10 MB/OH Cameron Bartus from West Seneca, N.Y., Declan Pierce, a 5-10 Libero from Buffalo, N.Y., Kyle Mackiewicz, a 6-8 OPP/MH from Edison, N.J., Bobby Wilden, a 6-8 OH/MH from Ashburn, Va. and Nathan Smith, a 6-5 setter from Los Altos, Calif.
Penn State returns to Rec Hall as the Nittany Lions host Mount Olive Fri. Jan. 27 at 7 p.m. followed by a match against Coker the following day Jan. 28 at 7 p.m.