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Living Well: OSU's Spring Revenge Record

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LittleChicagoan's picture
May 18, 2024 at 8:07pm

After what happened in football, fans on this site have sought revenge. Well, in football that has to wait until at least the fall — but there were opportunities for the Buckeyes to win titles of their own in the spring. Without being called into question by scandals or suspiciins of cheating. And they developed some good prospects. So how did they do in sports I was following (and posting on)?

Let's look at them in order of increasing success:

* Women's basketball. Unlike the men's team, the women's team had the skills to make a run for the Big Ten title. They beat out Caitlin Clark's Iowa Hawkeyes for the regular season crown, but disappointed in the Big Ten Tournament and were stunned in the second round of the NCAA Tournament despite being a #2 regional seed. Revenge score: 0/100 for the anticlimactic tournament play.
* Men's volleyball: The Buckeyes turned heads by beating both USC and UCLA early on, soaring to #1 in the rankings. But they lacked the consistency to stay there. They did battle back gamely to win the MIVA berth to the NCAA Tournament. But they went the way of everyone else East of the Rockies; the four teams fitting that descripron were edged by a combined score of 12 sets to 0 in the NCAA Tourney. Revenge score: again I have to say 0/100, because the Midwest seems not relevant right now.

* Wrestling: A strong performance in the National Duals turned some heads, including mine, but if there was any thought of beating Penn State for the team title it was busted by injuries in the middle weight classes. Individual titles — another matter. Jesse Mendez at 141# may have caught a break when the match against the Wolverines ended with the opponent failing skin checks, but there was no doubt who won two out of three contested bouts against PSU's Beau Bartlett over the couse of the season to ascend the podium. This was both one more individual title than the Wolverines claimed despite their having two finalists, and the first for OSU in six years. Revenge score: 50/100, gaining half credit for the aforesaid individial title margin when the team title was out of reach.

* Men's tennis: Winning the indoor title was tge first blood even if that was not recognized by the NCAA. The Buckeyes remained ranked #1 all season. The bad news: thet matched up poorly against an apparently better-conditioned TCU team in the national semifinals. The good: the men played well enough not only to outlast the Wolverines in men's tennis, but also to oytrun the better-ranked Alamo Rental Car women's team (which met with its upset in the quarterfinals). Revenge score: 50/100. Again not a championship, but some bragging rights.

*Women's ice hockey: The Buckeyes went 35-4, but th real record was 4-2: against Wisconsin, which is arguably TSUN in that sport (for now, read on). Included was the ultimate showdown in New Hampshire, avenging last year's NCAA Tournament loss and bringing home the trophy for the second time in three years. Soon after, ESPN reported that the Wolverines had begun to consider adding women's ice hockey because, their officials said, thae had seen enough of Big Ten rivals Ohio State and Wisconsin competing for championships. Well, the Badgers have long been a power in women's ice hockey and yet apparently had not triggered such a reaction; we know who was really getting under their skin with its more recent titles. Revenge score: 100/100, we got them even without the opportunity to play them (yet)!

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