MINNEAPOLIS – History was made Sunday inside The Barn in Minneapolis as Jantel Lavender became Ohio State’s all-time scoring leader. But the only stat that mattered to the senior All-American was win No. 15.
Lavender led all scorers with 29 points to lead the Buckeyes to an 83-76 win over Minnesota at Williams Arena and break Katie Smith’s record of 2,578 points set back in 1996.
“I was aware of it coming in, but I didn’t really know how many I needed (to break the record),” Lavender said after the game. “All I’m really focused on right now is getting wins. That’s all I’m really concerned about right now.”
Lavender now owns the record all to herself with 2,587 points. She set the mark with her layup at the 16:28 mark of the second half that put Ohio State up by one, 46-45.
The win was the second straight for the Buckeyes who improved to 15-9 overall while evening their Big Ten record at 6-6. After winning three in a row, Minnesota has now dropped two in a row to fall to 11-14 and 3-9 in league play.
The outcome, however, went down to the wire in a game featuring 17 ties and 10 lead changes. With the score tied at 71-all with 2:39 left, Ohio State would score the next seven points, starting with a Samantha Prahalis three-pointer from the left wing and four Tayler Hill free throws to put Ohio State up 78-71 with 54 seconds left.
The Gophers, however, didn’t fold as Jackie Voigt hit a three on Minnesota’s next possession to cut it to four. Then, after an Ashley Adams free throw, UM’s Kiara Buford raced back the other way and hit a running layup to cut it to three, 79-76, with 25 seconds left. But that was as close as the Gophers would get as Ohio State hit all four free throws in the final seconds to secure the win.
Playing in front of her hometown family and friends, Hill would go on to tie a career-high with 19 points while dishing out a career-high seven assists and sinking 9 of 10 from the line. Prahalis scored 11 and dished out a game-high eight assists while the vast-improving Adams recorded her first career double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds to go along with six blocks.
Buford led Minnesota with 23 points and six assists while Katie Loberg and Jackie Voigt chipped in with 18 and 17 points, respectively.
Ohio State returns home at 7 p.m., Thursday against Penn State and televised on the Big Ten Network.
Game Notes: Ohio State now leads the all-time series with Minnesota, 50-10, and lead 20-7 in games played in Minneapolis … The Buckeyes have won the last four meetings and nine of 11 overall … Jantel Lavender became Ohio State’s all-time leading scorer at 2,587 points, breaking Katie Smith’s mark of 2,578 set back in 1996 … Lavender also set an NCAA record with her 126th consecutive double-figure scoring game … Ohio State is 13-2 this season when scoring 70 or more points and 10-0 when scoring at least 80 … Ashley Adams recorded her first career double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds while recording a career-high six blocks … Prahalis finished with eight assists to move her career total to 636, seven away from the school’s all-time record held by Jamie Lewis (643) … the game featured 17 tied and 10 lead changes … Ohio State is now 14-2 this season when leading/tied at the half.