Ohio State played an extremely solid game against Morehead State. They were clicking on all cylinders for the entire second half. The offense got going after an extremely slow shooting start from three, but they practically went wire-to-wire for the win anyway. Ohio State played tremendously solid defense all game, and destroyed Morehead State in the second half, outscoring them 40-17.
Ohio State started the game shooting 2-10 from three, but finished 10-26 (8-16 since). The shooting in the second half helped propel the Buckeyes to completely dominate the ball game. Ohio State committed just 7 turnovers, which is huge for this team. Turnover-free basketball is best way for Ohio State to generate consistent, efficient offense.
All 5 Buckeyes starters scored in double figures, led by EJ Liddell with 16 points, and 7 rebounds. CJ Walker, Duane Washington, and Justin Sueing all scored 11, while Kyle Young finished with 10 points, and 9 rebounds. Justin Ahrens shot 3-6 from the field (all from 3) to finish with 9 points.
If the Buckeyes score into the upper 70’s and 80’s they will be difficult to beat, especially with the tough defense they’ve always have.
Morehead State was held to a pathetic 13-52 shooting (25%), and was a mediocre 7-21 from three (33.3%). Majority of those threes actually came in the first half, then the Buckeyes put some intense clamps down in the second half. The Buckeyes also forced Morehead State to 17 turnovers.
If Ohio State wants to have a shot at the Big Ten title, they will have to play this type of tough, physical defense all season long. Their biggest issue moving forward is their size. They do not have any significantly tall players, other than Ibrahima Diallo, who’s listed as Ohio State’s tallest player at 6’10”.
Overall, this is what I expect from this team against lower-caliber opponents. This was a much better performance than UMass Lowell. Ohio State’s ability to avoid committing turnovers, while forcing turnovers will be a huge determining factor in how far the Buckeyes go this season. Ohio State should look to keep their momentum going when they face off against Alabam A&M.
Next Game: December 5 vs Alabama A&M (7:00 PM on Big Ten Network)
Photo: Paul Vernon