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Purdue Volleyball Comes Home with Two Losses from Big Weekend

#18 Purdue fell to #7 Ohio State in five sets and was swept by #5 Penn State.

Friday night Purdue (15-4, 6-2) battled hard but couldn't do enough to pull out the 5th set win. Purdue struggled in the fifth set committing five hitting errors that helped fuel two key Buckeye runs. Purdue fell 15-9.

The Buckeyes came out firing the winning the opening set 25-15, hitting .429. Early in the second set up 7-0 it looked the like the Buckeyes were well on their way to another easy win. Purdue battled back though and went up 11-10. Neither team was able to create any separation down the stretch. A Cuttino kill extended the set when OSU had set point. Amanda Neill served an ace to get Purdue their first set point. Purdue later converted their second set point winning 25-27.

Purdue went up 16-10 midway through the third. Up 19-13 Purdue let Ohio State charge back and go up 22-21. The Boilers regrouped and got to set point. The Buckeyes denied them then similar to the end of the second set, a Cuttino kill and Neill ace helped Purdue get the 26-24 win. Like the third set Purdue had a sizeable lead midway through the fourth set then Ohio State came back and took the lead. Unlike the third set Ohio State never let Purdue take the lead back as Purdue fell 25-23.

Annie Drews and Alexa Smith led Purdue with double-doubles 17 kills and 11 digs for Drews and 13 kills and 13 digs for Smith. Danielle Cuttino and Faye Adelaja posted four blocks a piece. Amanda Neill anchored the back row with 20 digs Brooke Peters added 12.

Purdue was out hit .232 to .197, out-served 13 aces to 6, and out-blocked 12 to 9.

Purdue was no match for Penn State Saturday night. The Boilers stumbled out of the gate hitting .081 to open the match. Purdue let Penn State go on a 10-3 run that put the Boilers down 13-6. Purdue drew within four once but the final margin remained at 7, 25-18. The second set was more of the same. Purdue let Penn State go out in front and the Boilers could never close the gap. Purdue fell 25-17.

Purdue played better in the third set but was no match for the Penn State front line. The Nittany Lions hit .545 in the third set and put up 5 blocks. Through the middle of third Purdue kept within striking defense of Penn State. Down 14-12 Purdue managed only two of the next nine points to go down 21-14 en route to a 25-17 loss.

Purdue was not able to generate much production. Annie Drews led the hitters with 11 kills. Faye Adelaja added eight to go with three blocks. Amanda Neill and Alexa Smith both finished with 7 digs.

With the losses Purdue drops from first to fifth in conference behind Nebraska (7-1), Minnesota (7-1), Ohio State (7-1), and Penn State (6-2).