Photo credit: Logan Riely

Bobcat Volleyball Loses First MAC Matchup Since 2013

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For the first time since Oct. 19, 2013 the Ohio Bobcats lost a regular season conference game. On Saturday, the Bobcats traveled to DeKalb, Illinois to take on the Northern Illinois Huskies. The Huskies were especially dominant in a sweep (21-25, 14-25, 12-25).

The first set was close the entire way. Ohio had a 19-17 lead, but a service error by sophomore outside hitter Jaime Kosiorek cut the lead to one point. Then three straight errors by Kosiorek, seniors Shelby Walker and Karin Bull gave Northern Illinois a two-point lead. Ohio was not able to mount the comeback and they lost the set 21-25.

The second and third sets were not much better for the Bobcats. The attack and service errors continued and Ohio failed to get to 15 points in either set. The Bobcats had 15 attack errors in these two sets alone. Ohio was aced eight times, by the Huskies, which is the most all season and only the second time the ‘Cats gave up more than five aces.

During the second set, Ohio had a 3-2 lead and then did not have another lead. After an ace by freshman Stephanie Olman, a block by Walker cut the lead to 14-12. Olman missed the next serve for the Bobcats, one of nine on the night, and Northern Illinois went on a 11-2 run to close out the set and win it 14-25.

The third set was also very close to start. A kill by junior outside hitter Mallory Salis made it a 10-9 Huskies lead. But Northern Illinois went on a 6-0 run and made it 16-9.  After a timeout for Ohio, the Huskies continued to play well and closed the set on a 9-3 run.

After the game head coach Deane Webb tweeted, “Tough loss. NIU played very well tonight, so credit where it is due. We’ll get back in the gym and get better! #learninglesson #bleedgreen”

Walker led the Bobcats with match high 14 kills and two blocks. Senior setter Abby Gilliland had 25 assists. Salis lead the Bobcats with seven digs.

Ohio definitely did not play its best game of the season but the loss is not devastating as they are still sitting atop of the Mid-American East Division as it leads the Kent State Golden Flashes by one game.

The loss drops Ohio to 19-4 on the season and 9-1 in MAC play. Next up for the Bobcats is another road trip to Miami on Friday and at Bowling Green on Saturday.