COLUMBUS, Ohio – The No. 8/10 Ohio State Buckeyes (4-0) stormed out to a huge first-quarter lead and went on to defeat McNeese State (1-2), 99-43, Sunday afternoon on family day at Value City Arena in the Jerome Schottenstein Center.
After McNeese State scored the opening basket of the game, the Buckeyes went on a 26-0 scoring run over 4:47 with Jacy Sheldon (7 points), Taylor Mikesell (6) and Taylor Thierry (6) leading the way. By game’s end, Thierry had topped her previous career-high of 10 points, set last Sunday vs. Boston College, with 15 points. Rebeka Mikulasikova and Jacy Sheldon had 14 points apiece with Mikesell (13) and Rikki Harris (11 points) also scoring double-figure points. Hevynne Bristow led the team with eight rebounds and Madison Greene was tops with six assists to go along with eight points and four steals. Sheldon had five steals.
How it Happened
The Buckeyes led 35-8 after the first quarter with seven different players scoring led by Jacy Sheldon’s 10 points and six from a trio of Buckeyes: Taylor Thierry, Taylor Mikesell and Rikki Harris off the bench. Ohio State’s press and defensive pressure was stifling, forcing 16 Cowgirl turnovers that helped the home team to a decided, 25-14 shot advantage in the quarter.
The Buckeyes led 60-23 at the half with nine different Buckeyes contributing points led by Mikesell with 13 and 12 from Sheldon. The Buckeyes hit 68.8 pct. of their shots in the quarter to offset improved shooting by the Cowgirls, who hit 50 pct. of their shots after making just 21.4 pct. in the first quarter. Nine more Cowgirl turnovers increased their total to 25 by halftime.
Third & Fourth Quarters
Ohio State cooled off from the field, shooting just 39 pct. in the third quarter but still outscored McNeese, 18-11, for a 78-34 lead. Ohio State’s starters only played about four minutes of the third quarter before coach Kevin McGuff started substituting liberally to get 14 different players into the game with 11 of them scoring points. The fourth quarter was similar: a 21-9 scoring advantage for the home team.
What They Said
Head Coach Kevin McGuff: “We wanted to get some different people in the game and some different rotations and so it was nice to play a lot of people. There were mostly positive things coming out of this game: we played hard from the beginning and forced a lot of turnovers, which allowed us to get out to a big lead.
“We also got nice balance on offense which was great for us. We worked the ball through the middle and were able to let Rebeka some work around the basket. Ebony [Walker] did a nice job around the basket as well.”
Ohio State continues its three-game homestand with a matinee against Wright State on Wednesday at 3 p.m. for the faculty/staff appreciation game.
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