Nothing looked easy early in Ohio State's first two games. Nothing at all.
In a season opening win against Cincinnati, the Buckeyes needed nearly eight minutes to make a shot, and it took nearly four minutes to score against UMass Lowell the next game. On Wednesday night, in a matchup with 10th-ranked Villanova, No. 16 Ohio State wasted no time looking nearly indistinguishable to the team that struggled to score to open the first two games.
|#16 OHIO STATE||40||36||76|
The Buckeyes hit their first three 3-pointers, forcing Jay Wright to call a timeout. As everybody soon learned, they were just beginning. A 9-0 lead turned into a 19-3 lead, which turned into a 27-7 lead, which then became a 40-13 lead. Villanova ended the first half on a 9-0 run, threatening to make it close in the second half, but Ohio State (3-0) held the Wildcats (1-1) off for a resounding 76-51 win on Wednesday at the Schottenstein Center.
Ohio State shot 60 percent from the field, making 9-of-16 3-point attempts, and held Villanova to just 30.6 percent shooting. Five Buckeyes players scored in double figures.
|30-50 (60.0%)||FGM-FGA (PCT.)||19-62 (31%)|
|9-16 (56%)||3PM-3PA (PCT.)||10-30 (33%)|
|7-12 (58%)||FTM-FTA (PCT.)||3-7 (43%)|
Duane Washington Jr. only scored 11 or more points in five games in his freshman year. He caught fire to open Wednesday's game with three made triples and a dunk, reaching 11 points within the first three minutes. The sophomore guard ended the game with a team-high 14 points. Luther Muhammad, Washington's classmate and fellow starter, scored 11 points.
Kaleb Wesson collected his second double-double in a row with 10 points and 10 rebounds in 33 minutes. He blocked a career-high four shots. The big man has grabbed double-digit rebounds in all three games this season. Kyle Young, who started in the frontcourt along with Wesson, had eight points and seven rebounds.
Making a couple high-flying dunks, DJ Carton scored 11 points, adding five assists. Fellow point guard CJ Walker had 10 points and seven assists.
Next up: Ohio State plays host to Stetson on Monday. The game tips off at 8:30 p.m. and will be shown on Big Ten Network.
- Holtmann opted to go with the same starting five for the second game in a row due to an eye injury to Andre Wesson. CJ Walker, Luther Muhammad, Duane Washington Jr., Kyle Young and Kaleb Wesson rounded out the starting lineup.
- Ohio State will not play a ranked team again until it travels to Chapel Hill, North Carolina, to face the No. 6 Tar Heels on Dec. 4. It'll also face No. 1 Kentucky in Las Vegas during the non-conference portion of its schedule.
- Former Buckeye and No. 1 pick Greg Oden was in attendance. He was a student assistant last year.
- Former USC quarterback Matt Leinart was also at the game.
- This was the fourth-ever meeting between Ohio State and Villanova. The Buckeyes have a 3-1 lead in the series between Big Ten and Big East teams.
- Holtmann has now won his past three meetings with Jay Wright's team. Dating back to his time at Butler, he has a 3-4 record as a head coach against Wright and the Wildcats.