The last two times Thad Matta's Ohio State basketball team played a Big Ten road game, each were over by halftime. Thursday, the Buckeyes actually looked like they got off the bus in West Lafayette, Indiana, but it still wasn't enough.
Purdue used a late second half surge and balanced scoring attack to outlast Ohio State, 75-64, at Mackey Arena. The Buckeyes have now lost three consecutive Big Ten road games.
Purdue's size inside was a factor all night. Seven-footers A.J. Hammons and Isaac Haas as well as the Big Ten's second-leading rebounder Caleb Swanigan paced the No. 22 Boilermakers in the scoring column, tallying 16, 10 and 10 points each. Vince Edwards and P.J. Thompson added 12 apiece.
An early back-and-forth affair had Ohio State ahead 36-33 at halftime, but Purdue (17-3, 5-2 Big Ten) led 53-52 with under eight minutes to play when Ryan Cline buried a 3-pointer in the corner. It was the sixth lead change in the game and an ensuing 10-2 run by the Boilermakers put them out front for good.
Hammons and Haas scored 16 of Purdue's 33 first half points, but the Boilermakers still trailed at intermission due to stellar shooting by the Buckeyes.
|23-54 (43)||FGM-FGA (PCT.)||23-59 (39)|
|6-14 (43)||3PM-3PA (PCT.)||4-17 (24)|
|12-16 (75)||FTM-FTA (PCT.)||25-31 (81)|
Kam Williams provided much-needed offense off the bench for Ohio State in the opening 20 minutes, scoring 14 points before halftime and making his first five shots, including four 3-pointers.
Sophomore Jae'Sean Tate shouldered some of the scoring load as well, tallying nine points before the break. Ohio State led by as many as eight points in the first half and made 6 of 9 attempts from behind the arc.
Purdue's offensive rebounding allowed it to keep pace despite its shooting struggles. The Boilermakers corralled 16 offensive rebounds and scored 17 second-chance points.
Tate finished with 17 points and 10 rebounds, both team highs. Freshman point guard A.J. Harris set a new career-high with 11. Williams did not score in the second half, and leading scorer Marc Loving finished with nine points and a team-high five assists.
Purdue shot 31 free throws to Ohio State's 16.
Ohio State (12-8, 4-3) returns home to host Penn State Monday. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m.