November 22, 2021

Johnson Jr.’s Late Three Sinks Pirates


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FORT MYERS, Fla. – Ohio State freshman Meechie Johnson Jr. hit a cold-blooded deep three-pointer with two seconds left to lift the Buckeyes to a 79-76 victory over Seton Hall in the opening round of the Rocket Mortgage Fort Myers Tip-off.

The game had a little bit of everything. Seton Hall started hot from the floor and took an early lead. The Buckeyes used a big run in the first half to take a 10-point lead and led by as many as 12 in the second half. Seton Hall clawed back, bringing the entire crowd to its feet and then Johnson sent them reeling with a huge shot.

E.J. Liddell led the Buckeyes again with 28 points, one-off his career-high. He was a perfect 10-of-10 from the free throw line, including 8-of-8 in the second half.

Senior Justin Ahrens made a season-high five three-pointers and finished with 17 points. He also had a pair of steals.

Kyle Young came off the bench to score 12 points and grab a game-high eight rebounds. Johnson Jr. finished with eight points and Jimmy Sotos was perfect from the floor to finish with six points.

Seton Hall was led by Jared Rhoden with 29 points but the Pirates shot just 38.1 percent for the game, including 5-of-23 from long range.

The Buckeyes used a 19-4 run to take as much as a 38-28 lead in the first half. Liddell had seven of his 16 first-half points during the run. OSU shot 50 percent in the opening half while limiting Seton Hall to under 40 percent after a hot start.

In the second half, the Buckeyes build as much as a 12-point lead. The Pirates chipped-away and got within two with under three minutes to go. With the Buckeyes leading by two with less than 20 seconds to play, Liddell rebounded his own miss, but his pass was intercepted and laid in at the other end to even the score for the first time in the second half. Now with under 10 seconds to play, Johnson Jr. hit the biggest shot of his young career from way beyond the arc, eliciting a “Big Time Onions” call from legendary announce Bill Raftery.


  • With three blocks, E.J. Liddell has now recorded multiple blocks in four of the first five games this season.
  • Justin Ahrens scored a season-high 17 points on 5-of-8 shooting from long range.
  • Ahrens has made multiple three-pointers in four of the five games this season.
  • The Buckeyes made 11 three-pointers on the night and now made eight or more three-pointers in four consecutive games.

Up Next

The Buckeyes will remain in Florida for the second game of the Rocket Mortgage Fort Myers Tip-off and will face either Cal or Florida on Wednesday evening at 8:30 p.m.