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Huskers Sweep Buckeyes to Open Big Ten Play


Photo Credit: NU Athletic Communications Photo Credit: NU Athletic Communications

LINCOLN, Neb. - The No. 2 Nebraska volleyball team rolled along with a 25-14, 25-16, 25-21 sweep of No. 21 Ohio State on Friday night in front of a packed house of 8,711 at the Bob Devaney Sports Center. The crowd set a new attendance mark for the Huskers at the Devaney Center since moving into the arena in 2013. 

The Huskers (10-0) swept the Buckeyes (3-7) for the first time since 2019. Nebraska hit .333 on the night and held Ohio State to .090, the seventh opponent Nebraska has held under .100 this season. Nebraska is off to its best start to a season since 2016. 

Merritt Beason had a match-high 14 kills and hit .478. The junior opposite hitter also added eight digs and a pair of aces. Harper Murray provided 10 kills and eight digs, and Bekka Allick chipped in eight kills on .467 hitting. 

Nebraska had 11 blocks, seven of which came in the first set. Ally Batenhorst had a career-high seven blocks, while Allick had five and Andi Jackson had five to go with six kills (.600). 

Bergen Reilly had 36 set assists, and the Huskers had decisive advantages in kills (41-27), digs (35-29) and blocks (11-4). 

Emily Londot had nine kills to lead Ohio State. 

Set 1: Nebraska came out firing, taking a 10-3 lead before Ohio State used a timeout. Beason had a kill and back-to-back aces, and Batenhorst had two blocks and a kill. But after the timeout, the Huskers continued to impose their will, going up 12-3 and eventually 15-5 after two kills and two blocks by Jackson. Allick had two kills around a block with Batenhorst that put NU up 20-9, and the Huskers finished out the opening set on top, 25-14. Nebraska hit .296 and held Ohio State to .033 in the set. The Huskers had seven blocks in the opening set. Batenhorst had five and Jackson had four. 

Set 2: Murray began the set with a kill and Beason put down consecutive kills for a 5-2 lead. Allick and Jackson followed to make it 7-3, and the Huskers pulled ahead 12-6 with Murray contributing two more kills. Beason, Allick and Murray tacked on three more kills to increase the lead to seven, 16-9. Ohio State got within five, 18-13, but the Huskers slammed the door with a kill by Beason and block by Jackson and Batenhorst. Nebraska finished off a 25-16 win with two kills each by Murray and Beason down the stretch. Nebraska hit .484 in the second set, and Ohio State hit .143. 

Set 3: The teams went back and forth early in the third set, but Nebraska came back from down 10-9 to go up 15-13 at the media timeout. After the break, Beason terminated her 11th kill for a 16-13 lead, but Ohio State charged back to tie the score at 16-16. Beason connected on two more kills, and Allick and Batenhorst teamed up for Nebraska's 11th block of the night to restore a 19-17 lead. Beason and Jackson terminated back-to-back kills for a 21-18 advantage, but the Buckeyes got a kill and an ace to cut it to 21-20. Ohio State then committed two straight attacking errors to make it 23-20 NU, and the Huskers won 25-21 on Murray's 11th kill.  

Up Next: Nebraska hosts No. 12 Minnesota on Sunday at 6:30 p.m. at the Bob Devaney Sports Center.