A solid game plan kept Ohio State close against mighty Arizona, but a poor shooting performance from its star player ultimately proved too much to overcome for the Buckeyes to extend their season.
Super freshman D'Angelo Russell, the guy who's carried Ohio State all season long offensively, posted just nine points against the Wildcats, who overwhelmed the Buckeyes, 73-58, in the third round of the NCAA Tournament.
Ohio State's 2-3 matchup zone stifled the Wildcats early, forcing four Arizona turnovers in the game's first five minutes. Russell missed nine of his first 11 shots, but dished out five assists before halftime.
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A 9-2 run midway through the first half helped the Buckeyes surge ahead, as they got scoring contributions from Sam Thompson, Amir Williams and others to hold a lead. The Wildcats began figuring out the zone in the late stages of the first half, though, countering with a 9-2 run of their own to take a 26-25 lead into the locker room.
The Wildcats built their lead in the early stages of the second half, getting in the middle of the zone and kicking out to sharpshooter Gabe York. York finished with 19 points on five 3-pointers, nailing four in the second half.
Despite Russell's best efforts down the stretch, the punchless Buckeyes couldn't produce enough offense to keep their season alive. Russell finished just 3-of-19 from the field, in what is likely his final collegiate game. It was just the second time this season he failed to score in double figures.
Senior Sam Thompson led the way with 18 points in his final college game. Classmate Shannon Scott chipped in 10. Arizona torched the Buckeyes on the glass, grabbing 18 offensive boards and out-rebounding Ohio State 43-26 overall.
The Wildcats were led by star senior guard T.J. McConnell, who scored 19 points, grabbed six rebounds, dished out six assists and collected five steals.
Ohio State's senior class of Thompson, Williams, Scott and Trey McDonald finish their careers with 109 victories.