Buckeyes Keep The Momentum Going with Second Straight Win
OSU lead from start to finish and this game was never in question as the Buckeyes split the seasonal series against Indiana with a 68-59 win in Columbus. Kaleb Wesson scored Ohio State’s first 6 points and lead scoring with 15, adding 11 boards.
This was Ohio State’s first game without the services of DJ Carlton, who tweeted out this week that he needed to spend some time away from the team as he deals with mental issues.
OSU took the opening tip and Kaleb Wesson wasted no time scoring inside to put the Buckeyes on the board first, After a Hoosier traveling turnover, the Buckeyes got it inside again to Wesson and to go up 4-0. A couple possessions later, Indiana went up 5-4 for their only lead of the game. So the scarlet and gray went back inside to Wesson who slammed down his third field goal in as many tries and OSU was in the lead 6-5, and never looked back the rest of the afternoon. CJ Walker hits OSU’s first 3 to make it 9-7.
The Bucks were not able to get any additional scoring from Kaleb the rest of the half. But the next four scores where from four different players as first Kyle Young, then EJ Liddell followed by Daune Washington Jr and Justin Ahrens cracked the scoring column to give Ohio State a 17-9 lead ten minutes into the first half. It worked that way most of the half as all Buckeye players in the game scored with the exception of Alonzo Gaffney, who has not scored since the Nixon administration.
Unfortunately, the Buckeyes when on a scoring drought, all us fans are getting used to seeing this. Ohio State went from the 8:16 mark to the 2:50 mark without a field goal. Fortunately, Indiana was not able capitalize mostly because they were missing layups and they were unable to grab an offensive board. In addition, Kaleb Wesson picked up his second foul at the 3:17 mark. So they brought Kyle Young back in who had left the game with a nose bleed. But Young picked up his second foul with 2:50 left. In spite of the big men missing in the middle, Ohio State had a 31-22 lead at the half.
At the Half: OSU up 31-22 at the half, but is only shooting 23% from 3’s, where Indiana is shooting 60% behind the arc. Not a good look – Travel by Andre Wesson with 2.1 second bad, giving up a half court basket at the buzzer was worse, as the Bucks put absolutely no pressure on the ball. Indiana only lead for 21 seconds in the first half. Kaleb Wesson got OSU’s first 6 points by the 17:26 mark and never scored again in the first half going 3 of 5. On the good side, OSU had 10 assists on 12 field goals and held Trayce Jackson-Davis to 3 points in the half.
Kyle Young opens the second half with a quick score under the basket to get the lead back up to double digits 33-22, but then gave up a quick three by Indiana who is now 4-6 from three, where OSU is 21%. So Ohio State gets it back insde to Wesson to make the score 37-27. Kaleb first player in the game with double figures. Andre Wesson scores a three to make it 40-29 but Indiana’s Jerome Hunter gets a return three seconds later as if he Hoosiers just can’t miss. They are now 5-7 for the game, yet they are 297th in the country at three’s, go figures. The Buckeyes took the 40-32 lead into the first second half time out at the 15:58 mark.
Kaleb Wesson finally got a three-point goal to give Ohio State the 43-32 lead and it just seemed at this point Indiana could not get the score any closer. And just as the Buckeyes started draining 3’s, Indiana finally start missing them. On the next possession Wesson made a move inside the lane but had his shot blocked, but he kept fighting, got the offensive board and lay it back in. Today’s Buckeye squad was giving the impression that today they had the fight in them to say we are not going to lose this one. At this point, OSU had 9 offensive boards where Indiana only had 1.
If the Hoosiers had any hope they might get back in this, Justin Arhens ended it starting at the 8:00 minute mark as he buried 3 three’s over the next two minutes to expand the lead to 61-43 and as Karl Spangler says in Caddyshack “That is all she wrote”. Credit to Archie Miller in the last two minutes for not turning it into a free throw parade.
It was great to see the Buckeyes stay in the win column, and it was nice to see the offense look balanced again. 26 goals with 19 assists is a great look for this team. The next two games are on the road, perhaps they can keep this going and have the right type of momentum going into the Big Ten tournament. Go Bucks!
The next OSU basketball game will be Tuesday at 7:00pm when the Buckeyes take on the Wolverines in Ann Arbor. The game will be televised on ESPN2.
– Gregg Watson