No. 12 Ball State takes down rival No. 8/6 Ohio State to remain in first place

Photo by Vinnie Lopes

Freshman setter Lucas Machado seconds after delivering a block midway through the third game calmly turned away from the net and started to get ready for the next play.

There wasn’t much of a celebration, if any, given the moment in a close game. It also would have been hard to tell from the reaction that Machado had blocked one of the top offensive players in the nation Jacob Pasteur.

Machado was just that locked in and focused while playing for the first time in the oldest Midwest college men’s volleyball rivalry.

Machado along with running the offense finished with a team-high eight digs and added two blocks as No. 12 Ball State defeated No. 8/6 Ohio State 34-32, 25-15, 25-22, 26-24 on Thursday in Columbus, Ohio.

Ball State out-hit Ohio State .241 to .231 en route to extending both its first-place lead in the MIVA standings and its winning streak to seven matches.

Outside attacker Patrick Rogers in the victory led all players with a season-high 24 kills on a .383 attack percentage. Rogers opened the match with a game-high nine kills in the first game, including three kills in the overtime.

Outside attacker Tinaishe Ndavazocheva contributed 16 kills and was the only other Cardinal to have both more than five kills and hit more than .100.


Ndavazocheva also had three blocks against Ohio State. Middle attacker Will Patterson finished with a team-high seven blocks, while opposite Braydon Savitski-Lynde added four blocks.

Ohio State had to use multiple setters during the match because of injuries. Michael Wright started the match but suffered a lower-body injury late in the first game, and Noah Platfoot was inserted into the lineup for the remainder of the match.

Opposite Shane Wetzel had a team-high 22 kills on a .326 attack percentage and was one of three Buckeyes with double-digit kills.

Pasteur finished with 11 kills but was limited to a .065 attack percentage.The All-American also was pulled midway through the fourth game and was seen wearing a knee brace on the sidelines.

Despite the loss, Ohio State libero Thomas Poole led all players defensively with a season-high 18 digs.

Ohio State in the fourth game almost overcame a five-point deficit to force a decisive fifth game.

The Buckeyes rallied after trailing 17-12 and fought off two Cardinals match-points to extend the game to overtime. However, Ball State closed out the overtime on two plays with a kill from Rogers and then an attack error from Wetzel to end the match.

Ndavazocheva led all players with five kills in the third game, including a kill with Ball State trailing by two points that jump started a 5-1 run midway through the game.

Ohio State in the second game limited Ball State to a match-low zero attack percentage en route to a 10-point win. In addition, Wetzel had a game-high four kills to help the Buckeyes even the match.

Both Ball State and Ohio State in the opening game came back from four-point deficits.

Ohio State opened the first game on a 5-1 run that featured a kill and an ace from Pasteur. The Cardinals trailed by as many as six points before rallying and going on a 6-0 run to take a 16-13 lead.

Ohio State with Platfoot inserted into the lineup overcame a 20-16 deficit and forced overtime.

The Cardinals in the 18-point overtime fought off four game-points. Ball State was unable to convert on four of its own game-point opportunities before ending the game on a triple block.

This was the first meeting between the Cardinals and Buckeyes since Ohio State defeated Ball State in the MIVA Tournament finals last season. Ball State and Ohio State have combined to win the last two conference championships.