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Teammates from Ohio University's volleyball team celebrate after a hard fought rally in The Convo, Athens, Ohio, Oct. 5, 2023.

Volleyball: Ohio wins at Bowling Green to even early season record

Ohio was able to get back to .500 Friday night with a win against Mid-American Conference foe Bowling Green. 

“(This win) is huge, it’s a huge rivalry game for us no matter how they are in the season so coming out with a win and hopefully another win tomorrow would be a big momentum builder,” Sam Steele said.

Ohio started off the night with an impressive win in the first set, 25-16. A plethora of flashy kills from the likes of Ohio’s Anna Kharchynska, Elizabeth Hoerlien and Kam Hunt. Kharchynska principally helped Ohio command a lead mid-set with two crucial blocks to give Ohio some breathing room down the stretch. Caitlyn O’Farrell made her presence known with a highlight-reel kill followed directly by a spectacular block. Bowling Green kept it close, being led by Mia Tyler’s 5 kills; however, it wasn’t enough as a Tria Mclean ace and a Hoerlien kill sealed Bowling Green’s fate as Ohio showed off its depth as four players recorded 3 or more kills.

Bowling Green didn’t let its first set woes tank the rest of the match. The team would pull ahead of Ohio midway through the second set with momentum on its side as they’d take a 20-16 lead behind a Jaden Walz kill. Three straight errors gave Ohio life late in the set as it came down to the wire. Kharchynska, O’Farrell and Hoerlien came up with 4 crucial kills, 2 from O’Farrell to keep Ohio in it with a score of 24-24. This would cause the game to go beyond the 25-point threshold as both teams were fighting tooth and nail to prevail. Bowling Green’s trend of errors continued and is what cost it the set in the end, falling to Ohio 28-26.

The third set saw Bowling Green keep its hopes alive with a 30-28 victory. Karchynska and O’Farrell again led the charge for Ohio, with Kharchynska racking up 3 kills and a block with O’Farrell putting up an impressive 4 kills, including 1 to save Ohio and make the score 24-24. A late error that was overturned to be skill from Karchynska helped give Ohio a 28-27 lead, yet it would not be enough as they would fail to achieve the sweep.

Ohio wouldn’t let the previous set deter it, as it would end the set with a final score of 25-19. The Bobcats stormed out to a 9-5 lead due to incredible kills from the likes of Kharchynska and O’Farrell, yet the Falcons weren’t looking to end their night as they would claw back to make the score 10-9 Ohio. O’Farrell would take over the set from that point on, putting up kill after kill with a total of 6 in the set.

“There’s a lot of things we can get better at, but I’m proud of our team for hanging in there and we would’ve liked to win the third set but, coming back in the fourth set was pretty cool,” Head Coach Geoff Carlston said. “We’re better than a .500 team and there’s so much more volleyball to be played and we played a pretty tough schedule on the front end ... If we can get out of here 2-0, I’d be really excited.”

Ohio is set to play Bowling Green again Saturday with hopes of achieving a sweeping.

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