2022-23 Bball Ohio State vs Purdue

Ohio State took the #1 team in the country to the limits but stole defeat from the clutches of victory, turning it over late, setting up a game winning three for Purdue as the Boilermakers escaped Columbus, downing the Buckeyes 71-69 sending Ohio State down to their first conference loss of the season. The loss dropped Ohio State to 10-4 and 2-1, while Purdue improved to 14-1 and 2-1 in Big Ten play. Ohio State built a lead as large as 12 in the first half and seemingly took control late when a Sean McNeil triple dropped but a Justice Sueing backcourt turnover led to what ultimately became the game winning Boilermaker 3. The Buckeyes outshot the Boilermakers 50% to 43%, but 13 Purdue threes offset 14 turnovers. Playing without Zed Key, who went out less than 5 minutes into the game with a shoulder sprain was especially costly as Ohio State had no answers in the paint for Zach Edey, despite Felix Okpara’s best efforts, who played a career high 30 minutes and did an admirable job. Brice Sensabaugh led Ohio State with 21 and Justice Sueing added 15.

Brice Sensabaugh opened the scoring, driving down the middle of the lane and flushing it home. After a Boilermaker bucket tied it, a Boiler turnover led to a long Sean McNeil jumper from the left corner to put Ohio State back in front. After a Purdue miss, Bruce Thornton collected the rebound and threw a ¾ court pass to Sensabaugh who took it to the rim for a score. A Purdue free throw and an offensive rebound after the second attempt missed led to a Zach Edey dunk and at the first media timeout, Ohio State led 6-5. The main concern for Ohio State was Zed Key who left the court prior to the timeout with a shoulder sprain that would end his night.. Out of  the timeout a Purdue bucket put the Boilers in front for the first time but back came the Buckeyes. A Thornton triple from the top put Ohio State back in front and the lead was extended when Justice Sueing hit a 12 foot jumper in transition. The Buckeyes weren’t done, locking down in the halfcourt, their defense led to more offense. Sensabaugh hit a 10 foot left baseline fade that was followed by almost the same shot by Sueing. Right before the under 12 minute break, Felix Okpara blocked a Purdue shot at the rim which fell in the arms of Thornton who quickly sent an outlet pass to Sensabaugh who finished at the rim as he was fouled and at the under 12, Ohio State led 17-7. Out of the timeout, Sensabaugh completed the and one opportunity and the Buckeyes were on a 12-0 run and up 11. A Purdue triple stopped the run and broke a 5 plus minute scoring drought. After a Buckeye miss, Purdue raced up the floor and scored, but Ice Likekele broke the 5-0 Purdue run, spinning in the lane and scoring with the left hand off the window. After a Purdue hoop, Sueing found Tanner Holden cutting backdoor and he finished with a reverse lay-in. More outstanding on ball defense by the Buckeyes forced a Purdue turnover, their fourth of the game, and at the under 8 media break, Ohio State led 22-14. The Buckeyes extended the lead on their first possession out of the timeout when Holden drilled a long jumper from the right wing and after a Purdue turnover, Sensabaugh hit a fade mid paint to put Ohio State up 12. Purdue cut into the lead with a 10-4 run, but Sueing drilled a triple on Purdue’s next possession, a block by Okpara went off a Boilermaker just before the under 4 media timeout with Ohio State up 33-24. Back to back Purdue triples cut the lead to just 3 and Ohio State took a timeout. Out of the timeout, an Ohio State turnover led to another Purdue triple and the game was tied. Gene Brown broke the tie and the 9-0 Boiler run, with a left corner triple and that would complete the scoring with Ohio State leading Purdue at the break 36-33. The Buckeyes hit 56% of their shots, including 3 of 5 from deep, while holding Purdue to just 38% shooting, despite getting hot late and hitting 6 of 15 from long range including 6 of their last 8. The rebounding edge went to the Boilers in a big way, holding a 21-13 advantage, which included a whopping 11-1 edge in offensive boards, leading to a 10-0 margin in second chance points. Brice Sensabaugh led Ohio State with 13 first half points, while Justice Sueing added 7. Purdue was led by Braden Smith’s 12 and Zach Edey was held to just 4 points but did pull down 8 rebounds. 

An Edey deuce opened the second half scoring and cut the lead to 1 and on the next possession a Boiler triple dropped putting Purdue back in front. Ohio State re-tied the score when Okpara grabbed an offensive rebound and scored off the glass, and regained the lead when Thornton hit a straight on three. An Edey jump hook cut into the lead, but Sueing hit a jumper just below the stripe to answer. Another Edey bucket as Purdue was making a concerted effort to get the ball to him, cut the lead back to 1, but Sueing drilled a right corner triple to put Ohio State back ahead by 4. Purdue answered with a three of their own and at the under 16 media timeout, Ohio State was clinging to a 46-45 lead. The Boilers scored the next 7 as part of a 10-0 scoring run to go up 6 before Roddy Gayle hit a corner jumper to stop the run. On Purdue’s next possession, Okpara blocked an Edey attempt at the rim and it led to a breakout and finished with a Sensabaugh dunk. After a Purdue jumper, Sensabaugh tipped in a Thornton miss and at the under 12 media break, Purdue was on top 54-52 as Ohio State’s defense had ramped up, forcing Purdue into back to back turnovers. Out of the timeout, Ohio State tied the score when Sensabaugh took a dribble drive to the rim off the glass. A Purdue triple broke the tie, but Gayle got into the lane and scored. After Purdue split a pair of free throws, Ohio State tied it when Okpara scored with a short jumper in the middle of the paint and at the under 8 timeout and 7:08 to play, the score was tied at 58. Sueing broke the tie with a turnaround fade from the left block and after a Purdue turnover, McNeil drilled a long jumper to put Ohio State up 4. Purdue answered with a triple and Sueing split a pair of free throws and Ohio State led by 2 with 5:30 to go. Purdue regained the lead with a three after a poor foul call inside giving the Boilers a second opportunity and at the under 4 timeout, Purdue was clinging to a 64-63 lead. Sensabaugh hit a 12 foot jumper off the bounce just to the left of the lane to put Ohio State back in front, but a pair of Edey free throws gave the lead right back to Purdue. Okpara answered for Ohio State, splitting a pair to tie it, and after he missed the back end, Sueing grabbed the offensive rebound and the Buckeyes took a timeout with the score deadlocked at 66 and 1:53 to play. Both Purdue and Ohio State took empty possessions and the Buckeyes took another timeout in their frontcourt with 59.5 seconds remaining and the game remaining tied. Out of the timeout, McNeil drilled a step back three from the right point with 40 seconds to play and Ohio State was up 69-66. An Edey hook in the middle of the lane cut the lead to 1 with 28.3 to play and Purdue took a timeout. The Buckeyes turned it over in the backcourt as Sueing threw it away and the Boilermakers took a timeout with just 17.5 seconds left on the game clock. Purdue drilled a three with 10 seconds to go and Ohio State quickly advanced it to the front court and called timeout with 6.4 to go, trailing 71-69. The Buckeyes seemingly fouled, could not get a call or a shot off and fall in the final seconds in heartbreaking fashion.

There is no way to sugar coat this one.  It hurts. Possession of the basketball with the shot clock dark and a one point lead, all you have to do is knock down free throws and you get a big win.  Unfortunately a costly mistake and they paid the price. The facts are the facts however, and the Buckeyes were playing the majority of this basketball game short handed when Zed Key went down. They lose not only 12 points and 8 rebounds per game, they lose experience and a threat in the paint. Without him, they did all they could and had the win in front of them but ultimately it wasn’t meant to be.  At the end of the day, looking at this basketball team from a neutral lens, you can’t deny they are among the top teams in college basketball. Forget the rankings, silly bracketology projections, etc., there are not many teams in America as deep and talented as this Ohio State team when healthy. Bottom line, they likely win this game if Key is available for the entire game, but alas it wasn’t meant to be. So, as every game is important in this conference, they continue on and regroup. One loss won’t spell doom in the Big Ten conference race, and they must put this one in the rearview, focus on what they did well, correct the mistakes and most importantly get Key healthy. 

Ohio State hits the road for their next game, traveling to College Park, Maryland to take on the Terrapins on Sunday afternoon.  Tip is scheduled for 1 PM and televised on ESPN.

-Jason Harris


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