Ohio Hands Bears First Volleyball Defeat of Season
SPRINGFIELD -- Missouri State’s best volleyball start since 1977 was brought to an end Sunday afternoon as Ohio topped the Bears 3-1 (27-25, 21-25, 25-12, 25-21) in the final match of the JQH Invitational at Hammons Student Center. The Bobcats and Bears each finished 3-1 in the tournament with Ohio being crowned champion after defeating Missouri State.
The Bears (6-1) started slowly in the first set, falling behind 15-8 before using an 8-0 run to take the lead. MSU continued to pull ahead and had three set points at 24-21, only to see Ohio (5-2) score four in a row and then score the final two points after a Megan Bess kill tied the set at 25-25.
Missouri State tied the match at one set apiece with the help of a 4-0 run midway through the second period to go ahead 17-12. The Bears hit .385 in the set with 19 kills.
Ohio’s blocking was the story for the final two sets as the Bobcats stuffed 9.5 MSU attacks and held Missouri State to .076 hitting over that time, down from the .241 figure in the first two sets. Meanwhile, the Bobcat offense surged to a .322 hitting percentage over the final two sets in the two fairly comfortable wins. Missouri State did pull within a point at 19-18 and 20-19 in the fourth but could not get over the hump.
Calli Norman posted a match-high 15 kills for the Bears and Kelley Michnowicz hit .550 with 13 kills and two errors in 20 attempts. Abby Padlock led the Bears with 18 digs.
Missouri State hosts Saint Louis, Oklahoma and Utah Sept. 10-11 in the Dr. Mary Jo Wynn Invitational in Springfield. The action begins at 4:30 p.m. Friday and the Bears open with SLU at 7 o’clock that night.
Katie Post, Ohio (MVP)
Michelle Jantsch, Ohio
Shayla Patrick, Missouri State
Calli Norman, Missouri State
Sue Haydel, North Carolina
Kelsey Black, Texas A&M