BOSTON Senior guard Marscilla Packer and freshman center Jantel Lavender combined for 45 points and junior Star Allen added a double-double with 12 points and 11 rebounds as No. 16 Ohio State held off a feisty Boston University squad, 83-68, Saturday at Agganis Arena in Boston.
The win moves Ohio State to 3-0 while BU drops to 2-1.
The Buckeyes, who led by as much as nine early in the second half, saw their lead dwindle to one, 61-60, on a lay-up by Boston’s Jesyka Burks-Wiley with 8:31 left.
But just when it appeared the Terriers would take the lead, Ohio State clamped down on defense and didn’t allow another BU field goal until the final minute of the game after Ohio State had already seized control. The Buckeyes went on a 13-2 run over the next 4:29 to take a 74-62 lead as BU missed its next nine shots.
Free throw shooting kept the Buckeyes out in front as Ohio State made its first 15 attempts and finished 16-of-17 for the game, including a perfect 9-of-9 from Lavender. OSU hit 60 percent of their shots from the field in the second half and 55 percent for the game.
The Buckeyes, who are now 24-2 in the month of November in the Jim Foster era, opened up a 37-33 halftime lead behind 14 points from Packer, who was 4-of-5 from long range in the opening period, and eight points from Lavender. Ohio State led by as much as 11 on two occasions in the period, but three 3-pointers from Cheri Raffo kept the Terriers close.
Raffo led four Terriers in double figures with 23 points, hitting 5-of-7 from three. Burks-Wiley added 16.
Packer was 8-of-12 from the field overall, hit all four free throws and grabbed six rebounds. Lavender finished with seven rebounds and two blocks while Ashlee Trebilcock was the fourth Buckeye in double figures with 11 points and four assists. Allen, who shot a Big Ten record 69 percent from the field last season in conference games, hit 6-of-9 and dished out four assists.
Freshman Brittany Johnson, who filled the void in the second half due to Packer’s four fouls, enjoyed a solid day off the bench with six points in 14 minutes. Shavelle Little received her third-consecutive start and finished with five points and four assists, playing only 23 minutes due to foul trouble.
Ohio State returns to action Monday night against Southern at Value City Arena. Game time is 7 p.m.