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tBBC OSUWBB: Ohio State Outlasts WVU 88-81


OSUWBB: Ohio State Outlasts WVU 88-81
via our good friends at Buckeye Battle Cry
Visit their fantastic blog and read the full article (and so much more) here


(Photo courtesy The Columbus Dispatch)

Coach McGuff is amazed with what he saw.

The 3rd seed Ohio State Buckeyes (25-7) host 6th seed West Virginia Mountaineers (25-9) in a 2nd round game. The rode tenacious defense when their offense stalled and the hot hand of Kelsey Mitchell’s 43 points to edge by West Virginia, 88-81.

Kelsey Mitchell’s 45 points powered the Ohio State win. But it was their defense that kept them in the game for the periods when their offense went cold. I know it’s hard to imagine an offense going “cold” when you score 88 points, but there were stretches in the 4th quarter when OSU could not buy a basket.

For a notoriously poor rebounding team, Ohio State performed beyond expectations (mine at least) by out rebounding Nebraska 43-38. Of these, 14 were offensive rebounds, which indicated that OSU was aggressive at both ends of the floor.

The Buckeyes placed five players in double figures. Alexa Hart led the way with 18 points, followed by Shayla Cooper (16), Kelsey Mitchell (16), Ameryst Alston (16) and Asia Doss (13). Shayla had the distinction of pulling a double double with her 11 rebounds and Alexa Hart came close to is with her 9 rebounds.

Meanwhile West Virginia shot 41% (28-69) from the field, 31% (5-16) from 3-pt range and a paltry 64% (9-14) from the line. They grabbed 38 rebounds, 14 of them offensive.

West Virginia had one player in double figures, Jessica Shepard who led the Mountaineers with 20 points and 8 rebounds.

1st Half

A ‘neer FG by Bria Holmes one minute into the game was quickly countered by a Shayla Cooper trey to give the Buckeyes an early 3-2 lead. A WVA field goal at the 4:46 mark gave them a 14-10 lead. The quarter ended on an OSU shooting drought with West Virginia holding a 21-15 lead at the end of the 1st quarter. Ohio State’s last points were at the 3:39 mark. Meanwhile, WVA managed to score 4 points; thankfully OSU’s defense kept them in the game.

The Buckeyes shot 31% in the quarter; the Mountineers 38%. Ohio State was out-rebounded 17-8.

In the 2nd quarter, Ohio State ran out to a 9-0 run to take a 24-21 lead. WVA tied it :18 later. OSU gathered itself to go on a 8-0 run over the next two minutes to take a 32-24 lead. The run was powered by 5 Kelsey Mitchell points within a sixty second span. After an Ohio State turnover at the 4:19 mark, West Virginia went on a 13-2 run to grab a 37-34 lead with 1:41 remaining in the half. Then, a Kelsey Mitchell 3-pt’er at the :42 mark tied the game at 39 all. That would close out the scoring; halfway through the contest the game was tied at 39.

As you’d guess with two uptempo teams, the first half was highlighted by quick scoring runs and counter-runs. If you briefly lost focus, the other team would quickly take advantage of it.

Ohio State was led by Kelsey Mitchell (20 pts) and Shayla Cooper (8 pts, 3 rbs). Asia Doss had 4 rebounds and Ameryst Alston had 4 points off the bench.

Both teams picked up their offensive efficiency in the second quarter. For the half, Ohio State shot 47% from the field (14-30), 75% (6-8) from 3-pt and 71% (5-7) from the free throw line. They had 11 rebounds (0 offensive), 5 assists and 6 turnovers.

West Virginia was led by Bria Holmes (13 pts) and Tynice Martin (10 points). The 6’5″ Lanay Montgomery had 10 rebounds.

For their part, West Virginia shot 47% from the field (15-32), 36% (5-14) from 3-pt and 100% (4-4) from the free throw line. They had 24 rebounds (6 offensive), 8 assists and 14 turnovers.

2nd Half

The Buckeyes held a 67-60 lead at the end of the 3rd quarter, thanks to a late quarter Buckeye surge. At the 8:17 mark, it was tied at 41 apiece. Less than 2 minutes later, Ohio State held a 50-41 lead; this was powered by an Asia Doss 3-pt FG sandwiched between 4 Kelsey Mitchell FT’s. A mini-WVA surge brought the Mountaineers to with three points, 54-51 at the 3:31 mark, but 6 consecutive Mitchell points backed up by two Alston FT’s moved OSU’s lead to 62-51; finally a double digit lead. Two free throws by Makala Waterman ended the scoring for the quarter with the Buckeyes holding a 67-60 lead.

In the 4th quarter, the Buckeyes missed their first two FG attempts, but WVA’s Teana Muldrow hit a 3-pt’er to pull the Mountaineers within 4 points, 67-63 at the 9:41 mark. Ohio State gradually stretched out its lead until the 6:42 point, when a Cait Craft 3-pt’er gave the Buckeyes a double digit lead 75-65. It was Cait’s only second basket of the game, and she picked a good time for it.

At the 4:41 timeout, OSU held a 77-68 lead and the ball. However, Ohio State went cold. Craft’s FG was the last they scored until Shayla Cooper’s layup at the 1:41 mark as the Mountaineers pulled to within 3, 78-75. Cooper’s FG got OSU to the 80 point mark, but a Jessica Morton FG pulled WVU to within 3 points 80-77 at the 1:16 mark.

Three free throws (2 -Mitchell, 1-Craft) moved OSU to a 83-79 lead with :25 remaining. Then, a Mitchell steal on an inbound pass and break-away layup gave OSU an 85-79 lead. A Muldrow field goal with :07 remaining pulled WVA to within 86-81. Two Shayla Cooper free throws closed out the scoring for the game, ending it 88-81.

Ohio State was led by Kelsey Mitchell (45 pts) and Shayla Cooper’s double-double (15 pts, 10 rbs). Asia Doss (7 pt, 5 asst) and Alexa Hart (6 pt, 6 rbs) had good looking line scores.

Ohio State’s shooting fell off in the 2nd half, as they ended the game shooting 37% from the field (26-70), 53% (10-19) from 3-pt and 79% (26-33) from the free throw line. They had 37 rebounds (13 offensive, all in the 2nd half, 9 assists and 9 turnovers.

West Virginia was led by Bria Holmes (21 pts), and Tynice Martin (16 points), Teana Muldrow (15) and Jessica Morton (12). The 6’5″ Lanay Montgomery had 10 rebounds, all in the first half.

For their part, West Virginia shot 48% from the field (31-65), 41% (9-22) from 3-pt and 77% (10-13 from the free throw line. They had 46 rebounds (13 offensive), 13 assists and 27 turnovers. That is a lot of possessions to give up.

Up Next

Ohio State ply the winner of the Arizona-Tennessee game, played later today. The Sweet Sixteen game will be in Sioux Falls, SD. Of all places…

The post OSUWBB: Ohio State Outlasts WVU 88-81 appeared first on The Buckeye Battle Cry: Ohio State News and Commentary.

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