The day has finally arrived, the start of college basketball season and the Ohio State men’s and women’s basketball teams were scheduled to get the season off to a proper start by playing in the Carrier Classic in Charleston, South Carolina. While the men’s game was cancelled due to water, the women’s game went on with the 19th ranked OSU women’s team facing 7th ranked Notre Dame. The Irish were led by star point guard Skylar Diggins and come into this season looking to finally reach the top after losing in the NCAA tournament championship game the past two seasons.
As expected, playing the game outdoors had an impact on the shooting, likely due to a combination of the wind, lack of a good background behind the basket, and a very bright sun that was clearly making it hard for the players to see at times. Notre Dame got out to the lead first, going up 5-2 four minutes into the game but Ohio State quickly cut that lead to 7-6 over the next minute. After a pair of baskets by the Irish, the Buckeyes scored six straight points to take their first lead of the game, 12-11 with nine minutes remaining in the half. The Irish quickly retook the lead on a pair of free throws by Skylar Diggins and then extended that lead before a three-pointer by Tayler Hill, the first made shot from beyond the arc of the game, tied it up at 15. A basket by Ashley Adams and a free throw by Amber Stokes put OSU up by three but Notre Dame responded with a 10 to 2 run that put them up 25-20 with just under a minute remaining. A basket by Ashley Adams ended the Irish run and she then ended the half with a forceful block so send the teams into halftime with the Buckeyes trailing 25-22.