OXFORD, Ohio – The Miami University volleyball team took the Mid-American Conference leading Ohio Bobcats to five sets Saturday night, but ultimately fell, 2-3 (27-25, 17-25, 24-26, 25-17, 12-15). The RedHawks are now 11-15 overall and 3-11 in the MAC. Ohio improves to 22-4 overall and 12-2 in the MAC.
In what was a great team effort, several Miami players recorded double-doubles on the evening. Junior outside hitter/setter Meg Riley led the way with 12 kills and 22 assists. She was one dig shy of a triple-double, finishing with nine. Freshman setter Krista Brakauskas had 30 assists and 16 digs, while freshman outside hitter Maris Below finished with 16 kills and 16 digs for a double-double of her own.
In their final match at Millett Hall, the seniors made sure it was a memorable Senior Day. Senior libero Madison Hardy finished with a team-high 27 digs, while senior outside hitter Madison Dodd had 15 digs and two blocks.
Tied at six in set one, a service ace by Below, followed by back-to-back blocks from sophomore middle hitter Jenny Ingle put the RedHawks in front, 9-6. Ohio rallied to tie score at 13. The teams traded side outs until it was tied at 16. Kills from Dodd and sophomore outside hitter Annie Reiswig put Miami up two, but the Bobcats scored the next three points to regain the lead at 19-18 and force a MU timeout.
Out of the break, Riley scored back-to-back kills to begin a 4-0 run that put the ‘Hawks up 22-19. Riley and Below each had kills as Miami eventually got set point at 24-22. Ohio fought it off to tie the score at 24. The RedHawks did not give in as tied at 25, a block by Ingle and Reiswig, followed by a kill from Reiswig gave Miami a 27-25 win.
Tied at seven in set two, the turning point came as Ohio went on a 7-2 run to take control at 14-9. A pair of kills by Below helped the RedHawks get as close as three at 14-17, but the Bobcats finished the set on an 8-3 run to take a 25-17 victory.
Freshman middle hitter Paige Hill assisted on a pair of blocks as Miami jumped to a 7-3 lead to begin set three. Ohio responded with an 8-4 run that tied the score at 11. Hill recorded three kills, but the Bobcats eventually took an 18-16 lead. A kill by sophomore outside hitter Sarah Chaney, an OU attack error and a block from Reiswig put the ‘Hawks in front. The teams traded side outs until a kill from Hill gave Miami set point. The Bobcats fought it off by scoring the next three points in a row to steal a 26-24 win.
Three kills by Reiswig, along with kills from Below, Riley and Hill put Miami in up early in set four, a lead it would not relinquish. In front, 14-11, the ‘Hawks went on a 5-2 run to put the set out of reach at 19-13. Below recorded three kills down the stretch to help finish off a 25-17 victory and send the match to a fifth and deciding set.
Trailing 2-3 in set five, a kill from Below off of Brakauskas’ assist, a service ace by Below and a kill from Reiswig off of Riley’s assist put Miami up, 5-3. After the Bobcats scored a point, the RedHawks answered with the next three to take an 8-4 advantage. Ohio fought back with the next four in a row to tie the score at eight. The teams traded side outs until Miami was in front, 11-10. The Bobcats went on a 4-0 run to create match point at 14-11. A kill from Below allowed the RedHawks to fight it off once, but Ohio scored on the next point to take a 15-12 win.
Reiswig finished with 13 kills and four blocks (one solo, three assisted). She had three of Miami’s six service aces on the night. Hill had eight kills and five blocks (one solo and four assisted). As a team, the RedHawks finished with 13 blocks, with Ingle tying Hill for the team lead with five.
Miami completes its season next week with a pair of road matches. The RedHawks travel to Buffalo Friday for a 7 p.m. match. They then move on to Akron on Saturday for a 5 p.m. match.