EUGENE, Ore. – The Ohio University volleyball team (2-0) made it two-for-two at the Oregon Classic with a 3-0 victory (25-12, 25-20, 25-20) over Eastern Washington University (0-2) Saturday afternoon at Matthew Knight Arena in Eugene, Ore.
The Bobcats did their damage at the net, as Ohio knocked down 37 kills to Eastern Washington’s 17. The Green & White also held a 30-16 edge in assists while limiting the Eagles to just a -.051 hitting percentage for the match.
Ohio has enjoyed a +42 (81-39) advantage in kills over its first two contests of the season.
Underclassmen continue to make a major impact for the ‘Cats in Eugene, as sophomore middle blocker Karin Bull led the team offensively by matching a career high with 10 kills. The Bloomington, Minn., native hit .500 for the match and added three blocks, including one solo.
Freshman outside hitter Katie Horton (Westland, Mich.) put forth another strong effort with eight kills on 15 attempts (.400) while adding a dig and three blocks. Horton has notched 18 kills (second most on the team) while hitting at a .438 clip in the first two matches of the tournament.
Junior outside hitter Kelly Lamberti (Cary, Ill.) pitched in eight kills and six digs for the ‘Cats, while graduate middle blocker Alexis Pinson (Phoenix, Ariz.) had another solid outing at the net with three kills and a match-high five blocks.
Setter Abby Gilleland (Bull Valley, Ill.) put Ohio’s hitters in good position with a match-high 27 assists. The sophomore also tallied two service aces, three kills and five digs for the Bobcats. Sophomore libero Meredith Ashy (Louisville, Ky.) added two aces from the service line and posted a match-high 10 digs.
The Bobcats opened with seven of the opening set’s first 10 points, before the Eagles closed within two (9-7). From there, Ohio dominated the net with blocks on three of its next five points to open up a 14-8 advantage. A kill from Bull gave the Bobcats a 19-9 lead and Ohio closed out the frame with six of the final nine points to take it, 25-12.
The two teams played to an early 5-5 tie in set two, before Ohio posted three straight points to move ahead, 8-5. A block from Pinson increased the advantage to five (12-7) and the Bobcats stayed in front by that margin after a kill from Gilleland made it 17-12 in favor of the Green & White. Eastern Washington cut the Ohio lead to one at 20-19, but the ‘Cats rallied with five of the last six points of the set to earn a 25-20 victory.
Eight errors by the Eagles early in the third set helped Ohio build an early 10-5 lead, but miscues by the Bobcats helped EWU cut the lead to one at 14-13. Ohio responded with four straight points – including kills from Bilger and Gilleland – to go back up by five (18-13), but EWU answered back to tie the set up at 20-20. From there, Ohio posted the final five points of the set to take the match in straight sets.
The Bobcats closed out each half in strong fashion, including runs of 6-3 (set one), 5-1 (set two) and 5-0 (set three). Ohio has yet to drop a set in the 2013 season.
Ohio wraps up the Oregon Classic with a matchup against the tournament host, No. 8 Oregon, at 10 p.m. Saturday. The match will be broadcast live on the Pac-12 online video stream.
For more information on the Ohio volleyball program, like the team’s Facebook page or follow the ‘Cats on Twitter (@ohio_volleyball) and Instagram (@ohio_volleyball).