Calvin Mattheis | Ohio Athletics

Ohio Volleyball Gets First Wins of Season Over Weekend

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Ohio volleyball is making a move in the right direction after a successful weekend in Boone, North Carolina. Ohio defeated Appalachian State and Wofford with a pair of sweeps to get their first wins of the season at the Black and Gold Invitational Friday and Saturday.

The ‘Cats did fall in four sets in their morning game Saturday to UNC Wilmington after beating Wofford Friday night. However, Ohio showed great resilience by coming back out in the Saturday night cap to defeat the host team Appalachian State.

Mallory Salis was sensational all tournament long, and she saved her best performance for the last match of the weekend. She had 12 kills, no errors, nine digs, and added five aces to ice the cake.

Salis was out the first weekend of the year when Ohio lost three straight games, and she did not play in her first game until Tuesday’s five set loss to Marshall. She clearly has found her health and her footing, which is extremely important for the Bobcats because they are a much more complete team with her on the court.

The ‘Cats’ are young this year. The team and coaches know that, but they have high hopes that a difficult non-conference schedule can help the team develop quickly. Even with the graduations of their leaders from last year, Abby Gilleland and Meredith Ashy, Ohio intends to put up a good fight in conference play to defend its Mid-American Conference title from a year ago.

A good sign of development from the team has been the tenacity displayed by redshirt sophomore middle blocker Katie Nelson. “She has a long way to go and she knows that” said head coach Deane Webb. “”But it’s a great way for her to end this weekend, playing at this level.”

Things do not get any easier in non-conference play for the Bobcats, as Ohio heads next out to Norman, Oklahoma to play in the Nike Invitational. While there Ohio will have three matchups, taking on Lamar and Oklahoma on Friday September 9, and then finishing things up with a matchup against the University of Texas-San Antonio Roadrunners on Saturday.

Last year’s team found itself in national conversation after a shocking upset win on the road against the Kentucky Wildcats. While Ohio would just like another solid performance this weekend, there’s no doubt that a win over Big 12 power Oklahoma would give renewed confidence to this team.