FAIRFAX, Va. (WJHL) – The Tornado touched the floor of the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2018 on Sunday evening. The matched-up against Ohio State in the Opening Round, a rematch from five years ago.
The outcome proved to be the same, as the Buckeyes swept King, 3-0.
A back-and-forth first set saw the scored tied four separate times, including as late as 17-17, as Warren Davis buried a kill down the line. However, OSU would win eight of the next eleven points to close the frame with a 25-20 win.
The Buckeyes fought off another early King run in the second set, but won it handily, 25-16.
The Tornado turned the tides in the third frame, leading by as many as four points at 15-11. But, by the close of the set, Ohio State seemed to be closing in on victory at 24-22.
But, King fought ferociously to tie the set at 24 apiece, and would save a staggering nine match points. The Tornado had three set points of their own, but could not convert.
The score drove into the 30s, where an attacking error from Davis finally gave Ohio State the set and match victory at 36-34.
Davis led King with 13 kills on the evening, while fellow junior Kellan Kennedy chipped in eight kills. Senior Jack Sarnowski notched a team-best 31 assists and seven digs in defeat.
Ohio State was paced by Jacob Pasteur’s 16 kills.
King finishes its 2023 season as Conference Carolina tournament champions and with a record of 16-16.