After finally getting their first Big Ten win two weeks ago, Ohio State has lost two straight. The first loss was to hapless Wisconsin while the second was to a top 10 Penn State squad; the common aspect of both losses was disastrous second half collapses where the normally hot shooting Buckeyes couldn’t hit the broadside of a barn. OSU’s 11-9 overall, 1-6 Big Ten, record made this game a must win if the Buckeyes want to make the NCAA tournament. The importance of this game was not lost on Coach Foster who tinkered with his starting lineup, inserting Maleeka Kynard and Aleksandra Dobranic into the lineup next to Tayler Hill, Ameryst Alston, and Ashley Adams.
In another new twist, Ohio State opened in a zone defense struggled to match-up well on the perimeter and Nebraska took advantage by hitting a quick trio of three pointers to take an 11-4 lead six and a half minutes into the game. The Buckeyes responded though, capitalizing on some Nebraska turnovers to score 7 straight points, tying the game at 11 midway through the first half. The two teams would go back and forth for the next several minutes before the Cornhuskers went on 10-0 run to take a 34-21 lead with eighteen seconds remaining in the half. Tayler Hill would convert an old fashioned three point play in the closing sections to trim the Nebraska lead to 34-24 as the teams headed into the locker rooms.
Ohio State entered tonight’s game looking to break their three game losing streak and avoid getting off to their worst ever start in Big Ten play. That task wasn’t an easy one as the Buckeyes would be playing at #12 Purdue without starting guard, and best defensive player on the team, Amber Stokes. OSU’s job got even harder when before the game it was revealed that star guard Tayler Hill and sophomore guard Maleeka Kynard would also miss the game due to illness. The missing players forced a different starting lineup, with Ashley Adams, Darryce Moore, Ameryst Alston, Raven Ferguson, and Cait Craft getting the starting nod; this was the first career start for Craft.
After scoring the first basket of the game, the Ohio State offense struggled and the Buckeyes found themselves in a 14-5 hole eight minutes into the game. The next four minutes would see the two teams trade baskets before OSU scored seven straight to pull within one point, 19-18, with six and a half minutes remaining in the half. The Boilermakers answered right back though, scoring nine unanswered to extend their lead to 10. Ohio State chipped away a bit of that lead in the final two minutes but went into halftime trailing 30-24.
Sorry for this recap being late, have been at the American Astronomical Society meeting in Long Beach this week and due to various conference obligations I didn’t get a chance to cover the game earlier.
After starting Big Ten season with two losses, the Ohio State women’s basketball team headed to Minnesota looking for a much needed win. Making matters more difficult for the Buckeyes was the loss of senior guard Amber Stokes to a sprained knee against Illinois; Stokes is expected to be out four weeks but should return in time for the end of conference play. With Stokes out, Raven Ferguson got the starting nod; Darryce Moore also returned to the starting lineup, replacing Aleksandra Dobranic.
The two teams traded baskets for the first four minutes of the game but then Minnesota used a 10 to 2 run to open up a 19-9 lead just over seven minutes into the game. A minute later Tayler Hill decided she had enough of the double digit deficit, scoring seven points in a minute and a half to key a 9 to 2 OSU run that cut the Golden Gopher lead to 23-20 just past the midpoint of the half. Minnesota quickly stretched that lead back to 8 points and then continued to take advantage of Buckeye turnovers, and an OSU defense that was a step slow, to extend their lead through the remainder of the half. When the horn finally sounded for halftime, the Buckeyes found themselves facing a giant 50-31 deficit.
After a heart breaking overtime loss at Iowa on Thursday, the Ohio State women’s basketball team looked to get back on the winning track as they hosted Illinois. Despite coming in with a 7-6 record, the Illini were a dangerous team which had handed a top 10 Georgia team a double digit loss less than two weeks ago.
The game started off as a back and forth affair and Illinois led 11-10 through six minutes of action. A quick 9 to 2 run by the Illini stretched that lead to 20-12 in a span of about two minutes and had Ohio State fans very uneasy. Buckeye forward Darryce Moore wasn’t feeling uneasy though and hit a pair of back-to-back baskets to fire up the team and OSU scored sixteen straight to take a 28-20 lead with four minutes remaining in the half. After a timeout, Illinois nailed a three pointer to cut the lead to five and the two teams traded baskets the rest of the half with OSU heading into the locker room up 35-31.
Illinois hit the first two baskets of the second half to tie the game but Ohio State responded with five points to retake the lead. The Illini responded and tied the game at 41 with fifteen minutes left on the clock. Illinois briefly took a lead but OSU responded with 8 unanswered to take a 49-43 lead. The two teams would trade baskets for the next several minutes with Illinois getting as close as two points before Ohio State pushed the margin back to a more comfortable 5, 59-54, with just under six minutes remaining. A 7-0 run gave Illinois a 61-59 lead and sparked an exciting final four minutes of action. Twice Tayler Hill knocked down a pair of free throws only to see Illinois retake the lead and with two minutes remaining on the clock, OSU trailed 68-67. At this point things went horribly wrong as Darryce Moore reacted badly to being called for a four, earning a technical foul and sending Illinois to the line for a total of four shots. The Illini hit three of the shots to take a four point lead which would extend to six on their next possession. A Tayler Hill three pointer made the game 73-70 with just over a minute to play and OSU looked to have a chance. However, the Buckeye defense couldn’t get a rebound after a missed Illini shot and Illinois used their second chance to make it a five point game and force OSU to foul. The Ilini knocked down their shots down the stretch to hand Ohio State a 79-73 defeat. Read More
The Ohio State women’s basketball team closed out 2012 and the non-conference portion of their schedule by hosting Howard today. Coming off of a dominating performance earlier in the week, the Buckeyes looked to continue their momentum heading into Big Ten play where the schedule will get tougher.
Ohio State opened the game hot from the floor and quickly jumped to a 17-5 lead in the opening nine minutes. Howard finally got their offense going at this point but their defense still couldn’t slow down the Buckeyes and the two teams traded baskets the rest of the half; OSU went into intermission leading 33-21. The Buckeyes built their lead thanks to shooting a scoring 63% from the field but 11 turnovers kept the Bison in the game.
Howard opened the second half with a pair of baskets to trim the Ohio State lead to single digits, 33-25. The two teams traded baskets for the next few minutes and the Buckeyes led 40-32 with fourteen minutes left in the game when OSU scored 8 unanswered to extend their lead to a more comfortable 48-32 with just over ten minutes remaining on the clock. The two teams would trade baskets the rest of the way, with the Bison getting no closer than 13 points down as the Buckeyes came away with a solid, if closer than desired, 67-50 win.
After a few days off to spend Christmas with their families, the Ohio State women’s basketball team was back on campus today to host Virginia Commonwealth. Upon returning to the Schott, the team found their familiar surroundings not as familiar as when they left due to a new court being installed. As I mentioned in last week’s hive, the new court harkens back to the old days of playing at St. John Arena with its outline of the state of Ohio in the middle of the court.
Ohio State showed no sign of any sluggishness from eating too many Christmas cookies during their break as they quickly jumped out to a 16-2 lead in the first seven minutes of the game. VCU would score the next five points to cut the Buckeye lead to nine but that would be the last time it would be a single digit game. The Buckeyes looked like a well-oiled machine as they steadily built on their lead. Nothing that the Rams tried would slow down the OSU offense and when the horn sounded to signal halftime, the Buckeyes led 47-21, setting a new season high for points scored in a half in the process. Normally I try to inject some of the game drama into these recaps but there wasn’t really any today as the second half was pretty much the same as the first, with the Ohio State offense just rolling along on the way to an 88-50 win.
“I’ll Be Home For Christmas” is a popular holiday song and after a two game road trip to the state of Washington, the Ohio State women’s basketball team listened to the title of that song and returned home for a three game stretch to wrap-up the non-conference portion of the schedule. The Buckeyes kicked off the home stand today by hosting Southern University who came into this game looking for their second win of the year.
Ohio State got off to a hot start as Tayler Hill hit a pair of three pointers in the opening minute and center/forward Aleksandra Dobranic added four points to give the Buckeyes a quick 10-2 lead with just over two minutes off of the clock. While most people thought of Southern as just a sacrificial lamb, the Jaguars didn’t view themselves that way and they took advantage of some missed shots by the Buckeyes to go on a 9 to 2 run to make it a 12-11 game with just under fourteen minutes left in the half. After trading baskets for a couple minutes, OSU decided that they had enough of letting Southern hang around, going on a 20-3 run to blow the game open and take a 38-18 lead with two minutes left until intermission. The dominance of that run was made even more impressive by the fact that key contributions came from off the bench as Maleeka Kynard and Raven Ferguson accounted for 6 and 5 of those points, respectively. The Jaguars would close out the half on a 6 to 2 run but the two teams went into the locker room with Ohio State holding a comfortable 40-24 lead.
Coming off a disappointing loss to a struggling Washington State team on Saturday, the Ohio State women’s basketball team wrapped up their state of Washington road trip with a trip to Gonzaga. Things did not look positive for the Buckeyes heading into the is one as they had not won a road game since January 2011 while Gonzaga had only lost two games so far this season, to top ranked Stanford and to 7th ranked Louisville. Concern grew among Buckeye fans when Tayler Hill did not participate in pregame warm-ups due to a bruised heel, though she would still start.
Ohio State got off to a rough start, turning the ball over on three of their first six possessions and failing to hit a field goal for the first five minutes of the game but only trailed 6-4 at the first officials’ timeout with just under fifteen minutes remaining in the half. The officials timeout didn’t help OSU’s shooting and the Bulldogs took advantage, going on a 9 to 2 run to open up a 15-6 lead with nine minutes on the clock. A quick four points by the Buckeyes cut the lead to five but Gonzaga answered right back to push the lead back to nine, 19-10. Ohio State finally got something going on offense, getting out and running after pulling down some big defensive rebounds as they went on an 11 to 2 run to tie the game at 21 with three minutes remaining before the break. The Bulldogs quickly retook the lead but the Buckeyes scored the final four points of the half to take their first lead of the game and go into halftime leading 25-23.