#10 Ohio State Earns Big Win Over #16 Purdue, 80-71

Written February 12th, 2012 by Charles

Defensive specialist Amber Stokes came up huge on the offensive end today to help Ohio State rally to beat Purdue.

After suffering a disappointing upset loss at Illinois on Thursday where they had trouble with turnovers, the Buckeyes looked to get back on the winning track as they hosted 16th ranked and conference leading Purdue.  Today was the annual breast cancer awareness day which has been re-branded from ‘Think Pink’ to ‘Play for Kay’ in honor of former North Carolina State women’s basketball coach Kay Yow who passed away in 2009 after her third re-occurrence of breast cancer.  The big game and the important cause being supported today helped draw approximately 8,800 fans to the game, the largest crowd of the season.

The game opened exactly as expected for a matchup of two top 20 teams as Ohio State and Purdue went back and forth for the first 9 minutes of the game.  Neither team could build more than a three point lead and with eleven minutes left in the half the Buckeyes lead 22-20.  The Boilermakers defense had been harassing the Buckeyes all half and really clamped down at this point, keying an 11 to 2 run that game Purdue a 31-24 lead with just under six minutes remaining in the half.  OSU finally got their offense going again but they couldn’t come up with defensive stops and Purdue went into halftime leading 37-31.

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Illinois Upsets #10 Ohio State 66-65

Written February 9th, 2012 by Charles

Despite a great performance from Ashley Adams, Ohio State came up short at Illinois.

After getting back to winning by defeating Wisconsin on Monday night, the Ohio State women’s basketball team headed to Urbana-Champaign tonight to face Illinois.  Even though the Illini only had 2 conference wins coming into tonight, they are a much better team that their record suggests.  They have been in almost every Big Ten game they’ve played and gave the Buckeyes a stiff test in Columbus a few weeks ago.

Ohio State got out to an early 10-6 lead with just less than four minutes having run off the clock but Illinois quickly showed that they are better than their record as they scored 12 straight to take an 18-10 lead with just over twelve minutes remaining in the half.  The next two and half minutes saw the Buckeyes attack the inside and go on an 8 to 3 run to cut the Illini lead to 21-18.  Illinois extended the lead back to 8 only to have OSU come right back and cut the lead to 26-24 with just under seven minutes left on the clock.  The Illini would stretch the lead back to 8 but the Buckeyes cut into that a little right before the end of the half, sending the two teams in the intermission with Illinois holding a 34-29 lead.

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Deal With It Part 2: #11 Ohio State Defeats Wisconsin 72-58

Written February 6th, 2012 by Charles

Prahalis was not impressed by the Wisconsin defense as she scored a career-high 34 points.

In their last outing Ohio State suffered an upset at Minnesota for their second loss of the season.  In that game the Buckeyes struggled to hit shots or come up with defensive stops at key moments.  It has been 8 days since that loss and OSU has had plenty of time to work on fixing its weaknesses and tonight’s game against Wisconsin promised to show how well the Buckeyes took advantage of that long layoff.

Samantha Prahalis is the lone senior for Ohio State and she seemed to be particularly determined to get the Buckeyes back on the winning track as she scored the first six points of the game as the Buckeyes got out to a quick 8-0 lead.  Wisconsin was not intimidated though as they quickly responded by knocking down a trio of three point shots to go on an 11 to 3 run to tie the game up at 11.  OSU came right back though, taking advantage of some Wisconsin turnovers to go on a 16 to 2 run to take a 27-13 lead with six minutes remaining in the half.  The Badgers responded by taking advantage a few Buckeye miscues and forced shots to go on a 10 to 2 run to cut the OSU lead to 29-23.  Ohio State closed out the half on a 6 to 2 run to go into the locker room leading 35-25.

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#9 Ohio State Falls On The Road To Minnesota, 76-65

Written January 29th, 2012 by Charles

Tayler Hill and company could not come up with enough steals like this one to prevent the upset by Minnesota.

I want to start off today’s recap by first thanking the person responsible for scheduling today’s women’s game at Minnesota at the same time as the men’s game against Michigan; that is how you maximize viewers for the games.  Now that the sarcasm is out of the way, let’s talk about the game.  Today’s game was a homecoming for Tayler Hill who played high school ball just 4 miles south of the Gophers’ Williams Arena; Hill finished her high school career as the leading scorer in Minnesota girls’ history.

Minnesota got out to an early 12-6 lead thanks to 9 straight points.  Ohio State came back and cut the Gopher lead to 14-13 with twelve minutes remaining in the half.  The Gophers were not impressed though and used an 11 to 0 run to take a 25-13 lead with just under eight minutes remaining in the half.  OSU took advantage of some turnovers and fouls by Minnesota to spark a 9 to 0 run that cut the lead to 25-22 but the Gophers quickly extended their lead back to seven points.  The teams traded baskets for the rest of the half and the teams headed into the locker room with Minnesota leading 34-28.

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Samantha Prahalis shows that you cannot stop her dribble drive.

After overcoming a tough test on Sunday against an Illinois team that was winless in the conference at the time, the Illini got their first Big Ten win of the year when they beat MSU tonight, Ohio State traveled to Bloomington to face the only other team who came into tonight without a conference win.  The Buckeyes last visited Bloomington two years ago and were ranked #6 in the country at the time but that did not stop the Hoosiers from pulling off the upset.  Tonight the #9 Buckeyes looked to do a better job.

Indiana jumped out to a quick 7-2 and flashbacks to that game two years ago, or the Illinois-MSU game earlier tonight, immediately came to mind.  Both teams struggled to score but the Hoosiers managed to slowly extend their lead, going up 20-12 with six and half minutes remaining in the half.  After looking a step slow and out of rhythm to start the game, the Buckeyes finally showed a bit of a spark, going on an 8 to 2 run to cut the Indiana lead to 22-20 with two minutes on the clock.  An Indiana basket followed by an empty OSU possession halted the run but a Hoosier turnover on the ensuing possession led to open three-pointer from the corner by freshman guard Raven Ferguson which cut the lead to 24-23.  Each team would hit one more basket in the half and the two teams headed into the locker room with Indiana leading 26-25.

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#10 Ohio State Foils Illinois Trap 96-84

Written January 22nd, 2012 by Charles

Prahalis scored 10 of her 28 points in the final five minutes to key Ohio State's victory.

After two straight wins over teams that are contenders for the Big Ten title, today’s game against Illinois had all the makings of a trap game for Ohio State. The Illini came into the game winless in the conference and tied for last place. That winless record was a bit deceiving however as Illinois had already given scares to ranked Purdue and Penn State; in fact, the Illini had only been outscored in regulation by 11 points in their last 5 games combined.

The game opened as a back and forth affair as the two teams traded baskets. Illinois held a 15-14 lead about eight minutes into the game when Ohio State scored 11 straight to take a 25-15 lead. The Illini responded with an 11 to 5 run to cut the lead to 30-26 with just over six minutes remaining in the half. The two teams traded baskets for the rest of the half with the Buckeyes able to stretch their lead to 44-36 as the horn sounded for intermission.

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Amber Stokes battles for a loose ball during Ohio State's win over Nebraska.

Sorry for being so slow in posting this, I ended up in the hospital last night due to some complications from having my gall bladder removed on Tuesday.  Fortunately a great way to feel better is to watch Ohio State beat a ranked team.  Last night Nebraska came to Columbus for the first time as amembers of the Big Ten, if they were expecting a warm welcome, they were in for a surprise.

The two teams opened by trading baskets before Ohio State used 8 straight points to take a 13-6 lead six minutes into the game.  Both teams then went cold for the next few minutes but Nebraska was the first to regain their touch as the Cornhuskers scored 7 unanswered to tied the game at 13.  The two teams went back to trading baskets and the Buckeyes led 29-27 with four and a half minutes left in the half.  At this point OSU scored 6 straight to extend their lead to 35-27.  The two teams would then coast into the half with the Buckeyes holding a 41-35 lead.

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Ohio State's defense was key in their victory over the Spartans.

Living in East Lansing I have come to relish opportunities to see Ohio State come to town, even though those games are always met with a bit of nervousness as I hate having to deal with Michigan State after a loss.  In recent years MSU fans have developed a chip on their shoulder when it comes to the Buckeyes and so seeing OSU defeat the Spartans has become even sweeter.  Today’s women’s basketball game in East Lansing promised to be a tough test for the Buckeyes as Michigan State features a talented team and there is always a large, hostile crowd in the Breslin Center for this match-up.

It was made clear from the outset that this would be a hard fought, defensive game and after about six minutes Ohio State held a 10-9 lead.  Over the next four minutes the Buckeyes extended that lead to 19-13 only to see the Spartans pull ahead with 8 unanswered points.  The Ohio State defense stiffened, not allowing a point over the last five minutes of the half, while the offense put up 9 straight to send the teams into the locker room with the Buckeyes holding a 28-21 lead.

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