Around the Oval: Men's Tennis Gets Two Big Ten Wins, Synchronized Swimming Wins its 30th National Championship and Men's Volleyball Sweeps Ball State

By TJ Neer on March 27, 2017 at 1:05 pm
National Puppy Day with the Ohio State men's volleyball team.
Ohio State Athletics.

While many think of Ohio State as a football school, one program has dominated the field (or pool) in a way that is almost unheard of: synchronized swimming.

Synchronized Swimming

Since its inception, the Ohio State synchronized swimming team has been a perennial powerhouse.

Over the weekend, the team captured its 30th NCAA championship, the most of any sports program at Ohio State.

What makes this feat even more impressive is that the program has only existed for 40 years, meaning the team has won 75 percent of all national championships since 1977.

To put that in perspective, the Ohio State football team has won 72.4 percent of all its games. The synchronized swimming team wins national championships at a higher clip than the football Bucks win games.


Last week, the Buckeyes suffered two losses to Texas teams which knocked them down to third in the NCAA rankings.

This week, they looked to right the ship with wins over Michigan State and That School Up North.

On Friday, the team was nearly flawless against the Spartans and won 7-0. Sunday, the Bucks remained dominant against the Wolverines and took home a win in Ann Arbor, 4-1.

This win marked the end of Michigan's six-match home win streak, but it also marked Ohio State's 23rd-straight win over That School Up North on the tennis court.

With the two victories, the Bucks are now 3-0 in Big Ten play.

Men's Volleyball

The second-ranked Buckeyes are once again looking dominant and have extended their current winning streak to four straight.

On Thursday, the team blew past Fort Wayne in straight sets and on Saturday, brought No. 11 Ball State to the same fate.

The Thursday matchup came on National Puppy Day, and the team was sure to join in on the festivities:

And Brutus Buckeye was in attendance for the Saturday tilt, which was Beach Day in the arena.


Both teams began their Big Ten schedule over the weekend, and the softball team was very impressive.

In a three-game set with the Maryland Terrapins, the team emerged unscathed and outscored their opponents 38-8 on the weekend including a 22-0 win on Sunday.

Yes, you read that right. 22 runs on Sunday.

Included in the 22 runs as a team was sophomore infielder Lilli Piper's second-inning grand slam. Piper finished 3-3 with five RBI on the day.

The baseball team did not have the same good luck to kick off the Big Ten season.

After a three-game set with the Minnesota Golden Gophers, the Bucks have dug themselves quite the hole at the beginning of the season, as they emerged 0-3.

The team was outscored 26-12 on the weekend that included a doubleheader Saturday.

One of the games was deemed the Zach Farmer Memorial Game, and Farmer's dad, Larry, threw out the first pitch to redshirt junior captain Adam Niemeyer.

For those who don't know, Zach Farmer was a pitcher for the Bucks in 2014 and 2015 who died from Leukemia Aug. 4, 2015.


After their huge win over top-ranked Denver last week, the men's lacrosse team looked to continue their success in a stretch of the schedule that will be only ranked teams for the rest of the season.

They got off to a slow start with No. 2 Notre Dame, losing 12-7.

Freshman midfielder Tre Leclaire tallied four goals in the game, including two in the final nine seconds of the first half to bring the score to 7-5 at halftime.

The Buckeyes can be happy about one thing though: they notched SportsCenter's No. 1 spot on Top 10 Plays of the Day.

Women's lacrosse suffered two losses over the course of the week. Their first loss came 15-5 at the hands of Rutgers and their second came 16-7 to No. 9 USC.

Sophomore midfielder Erika Keselman tallied four goals in the two games to lead the Buckeyes. 

Other Events

  • Ohio State women's pistol won a national championship as a team and had an individual champion in junior Irina Andrianova. The individual title was Andrianova's fourth. The team's last aggregate national championship came in 2009.
  • Ohio State men's swimming placed 19th at NCAA Championships. The finish marks their 11th straight finish in the top 20.
  • Men's golf finished tied for sixth out of 15 at the Linger Longer Invitational in Greensboro, Ga.
  • Ohio State fencing finished as a runner-up for the second consecutive year, and the team finished with seven All-Americans and five medal winners.


March 28

  • Baseball vs. Ohio
  • Men's Volleyball @ Penn State

March 29

  • Softball vs. Wright State

March 31

  • Women's Tennis vs. Rutgers
  • Men's Tennis @ Iowa
  • Women's Tennis vs. Dayton
  • Softball vs. Rutgers
  • Baseball vs. Purdue
  • Men's Volleyball vs. McKendree
  • Track & Field, Florida Relays (Gainesville, Fla.)
  • Women's Golf, Clemson Invitational (Sunset, S.C.)

April 1

  • Women's Lacrosse @ Penn State
  • Softball vs. Rutgers
  • Women's Gymnastics, NCAA Regional (Champaign, Ill.)
  • Baseball vs. Purdue
  • Men's Volleyball vs. McKendree
  • Track & Field, Florida Relays (Gainesville, Fla.)
  • Women's Golf, Clemson Invitational (Sunset, S.C.)
  • Women's Rowing, Stanford Invite (Redwood Shores, Calif.)
  • Women's Volleyball, Circle City Invitational (Indianapolis)

April 2

  • Women's Tennis vs. Maryland
  • Softball vs. Rutgers
  • Baseball vs. Purdue
  • Men's Soccer @ Cleveland State
  • Men's Tennis @ Nebraska
  • Men's Lacrosse @ Penn State
  • Women's Rowing, Stanford Invite (Redwood Shores, Calif.)
  • Women's Golf, Clemson Invitational (Sunset, S.C.)
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