Keita Bates-Diop, Kam Williams and Jae'Sean Tate combined to score 65 points as Ohio State knocked off Rutgers on Saturday, 79-69, to move to 16-10 on the season and 8-5 in the Big Ten.
Bates-Diop and Tate each had double-doubles. Tate, the sophomore forward, finished with 22 points and 13 rebounds, while Bates-Diop, also a sophomore, had a game-high 24 points with 14 boards. Williams caught fire off the bench, scoring 19 points on 7-of-11 shooting.
The Buckeyes shot 51 percent from the field for the game and made 9-of-24 tries from behind the 3-point line. That was mostly due to Williams, who was 5-for-8 from deep by himself. Led by Bates-Diop and Tate, Ohio State pounded the Scarlet Knights on the glass, 46-33, but the Buckeyes committed 19 turnovers in the game and allowed the home team to hang around,
Freshman guard Corey Sanders led the way for Rutgers with 23 points. The Scarlet Knights are now just 6-19 on the season and 0-12 in the Big Ten.
A horrific start by Rutgers allowed Ohio State to build an early 16-point lead. The Buckeyes used a 16-0 run over a seven-minute period in the first half to jump out quickly, 22-6. The Scarlet Knights missed 10-consecutive shots during that run.
|31-61 (51)||FGM-FGA (PCT.)||25-65 (39)|
|9-24 (38)||3PM-3PA (PCT.)||3-20 (15)|
|8-15 (53)||FTM-FTA (PCT.)||16-25 (64)|
But Rutgers responded with 13 unanswered points of its own to get things within three at 22-19 after a breakaway dunk by Sanders. Ohio State coach Thad Matta called timeout after that, though, and from that point forward it was all Buckeyes in the first half.
Ohio State used a 9-2 run near the end of the half largely sparked by Bates-Diop and Williams. Bates-Diop had a steal and a dunk while Williams scored all seven of his first-half points over that 1:39 stretch. The Buckeyes led 35-26 at halftime.
Bates-Diop led all scorers with 14 first-half points. Williams had his seven, while Tate had six points and eight rebounds in the first half. Sanders led Rutgers with 13 first-half points.
Ohio State shot just 43 percent from the field in the opening 20 minutes, but Rutgers was worse at 31 percent. The Buckeyes made 4-of-13 attempts from behind the 3-point line while the Scarlet Knights were just 2-for-10. Ohio State outrebounded Rutgers in the first half by seven, but the Buckeyes committed nine first-half turnovers that led to seven points for the Scarlet Knights.
Next up for Ohio State is Michigan, which knocked off 18th-ranked Purdue on Saturday, 61-56. The Buckeyes host the Wolverines 7 p.m. Tuesday.