Sept. 10, 2008
LOS ANGELES, Calif. -
LMU (4-3) fell 3-1 in its home-opener against Ohio State (6-2) on Wednesday night in Gersten Pavilion. The Lions took set one by a count of 25-23 before dropping sets two through four, 25-21, 25-19 and 25-18.
Senior Emily Day paced the Lion offense, totaling a match-best 20 kills, while also recording a double-double with 15 digs. Megan Nash, who once again finished as the team's leading hitter, collected a career-high 13 kills at a .440 pace (13-for-25). Setter Renee Horton also posted a double-double on the night, teaming 34 assists with a team-best 13 digs.
Kristen Dozier guided the Buckeye offense with 15 kills, while Kaila Calhoun and Chelsea Noble finished with 14 and 12, respectively. Ashley Hughes dished-out a match-high 43 assists, while Calhoun managed a match-best 18 digs.
LMU took set one of the match, led by Day's six kills in the period. The Lions and Buckeyes were tied early at 3-3 before LMU rattled-off seven unanswered points to take an early 10-3 advantage. A Day kill pushed the Lions to 15 points before a flurry of Ohio State points cut the advantage to 17-15. Hughes notched her only kill of the set to draw the teams even tighter at 20-19 before LMU pushed the tally to set point on a Becky Stehling kill to make it 24-21. Ohio State did answer for the next two points, but eventually succumb to victory on an Emily Cheek kill for the set.
The Buckeyes responded to knot the match at one set apiece after taking set two by a score of 25-21. Dozier paced the attack in the period, posting four kills on 10 attacks. Nash picked her game up for LMU in set two, collecting six of her 13 kills at a .667 pace. This time it was Ohio State who jumped out to an early lead, claiming a 10-5 advantage on a Lion attack error. The Buckeyes maintained the five-point lead at 15-10 as Hughes recorded a kill. The lead continued to stay consistent when Noble connected for one of her two kills in the set to run the tally to 21-16. Another Nash kill put the Lions within a point at 21-20, but Ohio State posted four of the next five points, including three unanswered to close the set, capped by a Noble kill.
Ohio State once again came out swinging in set three, earning a 25-19 decision. Calhoun, Dozier and Day each posted five kills in the set. The two teams played a very even period to start, matching each other nearly point-for-point to 12-12. A Dozier kill made it 13-12 before Laura Kastein held serve for four straight points, including an ace, to guide the Buckeyes to a 17-12 lead. LMU committed an attack error shortly thereafter, leaving the set at 20-15 and forcing a timeout. Unfortunately for the Lions, the timeout did very little to slow the momentum as Ohio State took the set on another Dozier kill.
The Lions posted their highest team hitting percentage in set four with a .241 mark (10-for-29), but it proved not enough as the Buckeyes claimed the set victory and the match with the 25-18 decision. Calhoun contributed five kills, while Noble and Dozier each pitched-in four. Day finished the match strong, collecting six kills on 11 attacks for a .455 percentage. The Lions trailed virtually throughout the set, as a Stehling service ace allowed Ohio State to reach 10 points first, running the tally to 10-5. Calhoun connected at 14-9 to push the Buckeyes to the 15-point plateau just a few moments later. LMU scratched-back to 16-14 on a Noble attack error, but that would be as close as they would get the rest of the way. After Horton was called for a bad set to run the score to 20-16, Calhoun made it match-point with a kill at 23-17. The Lions fought-off one match-point, but couldn't escape a second, as Calhoun found the floor for the final time.
LMU will return to action as they host the Four Points Sheraton LAX/LMU Volleyball Classic on Friday and Saturday. That tournament will be played in Burns Recreation Center and will kick-off with UC Irvine and San Jose State at 4:30 p.m. on Friday. LMU will hit the floor for the first time on Friday night, meeting Pittsburgh at 7:00 p.m.