In order to hang around with Ohio State on Sunday, South Carolina State needed to stem Ohio State's offensive attack, while also getting through the Buckeyes stout defense.
The Bulldogs kept it close early, with the Buckeyes up just 8-6 at the under 16:00 timeout. But, just as we saw against Creighton, when the Buckeyes substituted in Keyshawn Woods, the game was broken open. After Woods entered the game, Ohio State went on a 16-3 run to go up 24-9.
The Buckeyes were up 30-12 at the under 8:00 timeout after a thunderous putback dunk by Musa Jallow, his only points of the half.
|SOUTH CAROLINA STATE||21||40||61|
Kaleb Wesson was the star of the first half, scoring 17 points to lead all players, including three three-pointers.
The Buckeye defense was also on display in the opening frame, as Ohio State forced the Bulldogs to shoot just 27% from the field in the first half, with seven turnovers. The Buckeyes took a 43-21 lead into the locker room.
In the final 20 minutes, Ohio State scored 46 points. After scoring 21 points in the first half, South Carolina State put up 40 second-half points. Ohio State hit 54.9% percent of its shots, as opposed to the Bulldogs' percentage of 37.1.
The most exciting sequence of the second half came when Musa Jallow went up to block a dunk attempt by South Carolina State, leading Luther Muhammad to throw an alley-oop to Duane Washington. Washington converted, and was fouled. Washington hit the free-throw to convert the three-point play.
In 21 minutes, Wesson hit 4-of-7 shots, including 3-of-4 from beyond the arc. He also had 5 rebounds. Luther Muhammad and Keyshawn Woods led the team with four assists. Wesson sat out a large portion of the second half due to Ohio State's large lead.
|OHIO STATE||STAT||SOUTH CAROLINA STATE|
|28-51 (54.9%)||FGM-FGA (PCT.)||23-62 (37.1%)|
|7-19 (36.8%)||3PM-3PA (PCT.)||3-19 (15.8%)|
|26-35 (74.3%)||FTM-FTA (PCT.)||12-14 (85.7%)|
Playing his second-ever home game for the Buckeyes, freshman Duane Washington Jr. finished second on the team with 14 points. Muhammad, a fellow freshman guard, had 12 points.
All players on the Ohio State roster saw time in this one, with Joey Lane and Danny Hummer seeing action towards the end of the contest.
Justin Ahrens scored the first bucket of his Ohio State career with a three-pointer in the second half.
South Carolina State junior forward Damani Applewhite led the Bulldogs with 15 points.
The Buckeyes survived a scare late in the first half when Luther Muhammad limped to the bench with what appeared to be a foot/ankle injury.
Muhammad fell to the court after a South Carolina State possession and was promptly taken out of the game and treated on the bench. He re-entered the game to begin the second half, and promptly scored the first bucket. He finished with 12 points.