David Lighty led four Buckeyes in double figures with 21 points to go along with 10 rebounds in an 81-68 victory over a game Jacksonville Dolphin squad.
Evan Turner (17 pts, 5 reb), Jon Diebler (14 pts) and Jeremie Simmons (10 pts) combined with Lighty and the rest of the Buckeyes to shoot a blistering 64% from the floor including a 10/17 (58%) night from beyond the arc though the Buckeyes continued to struggle from the stripe converting just 63% (17/27) of their charity tosses.
The contest featured a barrage of runs from both teams including an 18-2 run giving OSU an early 18-6 lead with 12:22 left in the first half before Jacksonville countered with a 14-4 run of their own cutting the OSU lead to 22-20.
Shortly thereafter, the Buckeyes went on a 13-4 run keyed by two threes and an assist from Wil Buford before a Lehmon Colbert triple cut the OSU lead to 45-34 at intermission.
Lighty had 14 points on 5/6 shooting with Buford (3/4 FG) and Turner adding eight each in a first half that saw the Bucks shoot 74%. The Buckeyes also assisted on seven of their 17 first half field goals after recording just six total assists in the win over Butler.
Ohio State would stretch the lead to 56-37 with 17:09 left thanks to an 11-3 run to start the second stanza featuring triples from Diebler, Lighty and Simmons but soft defense and turnovers allowed Jacksonville to chip away and cut the lead to 69-64 with 5:04 left.
Fortunately, Lighty, Turner and Dallas Lauderdale combined to convert 7/8 free throws over the final five minutes as OSU closed the game on a 12-4 run pushing the final margin to 13 points.
While the Buckeye defenders looked sluggish and disinterested at times, allowing Jacksonville to shoot 50% (26/52) for the game, they were able to lock down the Dolphin shooters when necessary and held a slight 26-23 edge on the glass thanks to Lighty's 10 caroms and Turner's five.
Besides the stellar play from Lighty, positives included Diebler taking three shots inside the arc (2/3), Simmons shooting over 50% (4/7) for the first time this season and Buford recording 8 points (3/6) and a nice assist after getting shut out versus Butler.
Anthony Crater also saw a little more action and though he failed to score, he did drop three dimes and grabbed two boards after seeing just six minutes against Butler thanks to the flu.
Though the Buckeyes scored their most points to date, they got very little down low as Lauderdale (8pts, 3 reb) and B.J. Mullens (3pts, 1 reb) combined for just 11 points and 4 boards.
Next up: the Iona Gaels this Saturday at Noon EST.