Ohio State Trails For Entire Second Half, Drops to Maryland, 75-60

By Griffin Strom on February 27, 2022 at 6:12 pm

Many might have penciled in a win for Ohio State when taking on a Maryland team it beat by 15 three weeks ago, but the Terps told a different story on Sunday.

After taking a four-point lead to halftime in College Park, Maryland never relinquished it in the second half, as No. 22 Ohio State couldn’t come back to notch its second road win in the past four days. The Terrapins topped the Buckeyes, 75-60, to even the season series with Ohio State following a Feb. 6 loss in Columbus.

Team 1 2 FINAL
#22 OHIO STATE 28 32 60
MARYLAND 32 43 75

Down just a couple possessions for most of the final period, Ohio State appeared poised to make a late run when Cedric Russell hit a 3-pointer to make it a four-point game with 6:43 to play. But Maryland responded with a crucial 7-0 run stretch that all but extinguished any hopes of a comeback effort for Ohio State.

Terrapin guards Eric Ayala and Fatts Russell combined to score 50 points while Ohio State stars E.J. Liddell and Malaki Branham struggled from the floor all afternoon during the loss, hitting just seven of their 23 shot attempts.

Ohio State shot just 36.2 percent from the field for the game, and Maryland scored 18 points off of the Buckeyes' 11 turnovers. The Terps also got the better of the rebounding differential, 37-32, had 11 more second-chance points and outscored the Buckeyes by six points in the paint.

First Half

Maryland jumped out to an 8-0 start to open up the first few minutes, but Ohio State responded with a 14-4 run to take its first lead of the game at the 12:25 mark. But upon giving up the lead a littler over three minutes later, the Buckeyes never got it back.

Ayala scored 11 straight points for Maryland from 8:06 to 5:37, and a Donta Scott jumper thereafter helped put the Terps up five points on the Buckeyes in the final five minutes of the half. Kyle Young scored twice in the last two minutes and change, but Maryland went to halftime up 32-28 on Ohio State as Fatts Russell converted an and-one with 1:47 to play.

60 POINTS 75
21-58 (36.2%) FGM-FGA (PCT.) 26-56 (46%)
8-28 (28.6%) 3PM-3PA (PCT.) 9-21 (42.9%)
10-11 (90.9%) FTM-FTA (PCT.) 14-18 (77.8%)

Both teams struggled to score for large swaths of the opening period, as the Buckeyes shot just 36.7 percent from the field – including 3-for-16 from 3-point range – and Maryland hit only 43.3 percent of its own attempts.

Ohio State had the edge in the rebounding battle and its bench outscored Maryland’s own 14-0, but the Buckeyes spent just 1:46 of the first half with a lead while the Terps scored six more points in the paint.

Second Half

Maryland extended its lead to eight points in the first 1:20 of the second half, but the Buckeyes closed the distance with a stretch of eight straight points by Jamari Wheeler to bring Ohio State within two points at the 16:30 mark.

Ohio State didn’t hit another shot from the floor for nearly three minutes of game time, but its next hit brought the deficit down to just one point after a 3-pointer by Cedric Russell. Maryland managed to stay out ahead of Ohio State, though, as an and-one putback layup by Donta Scott put the Terps back up five points with 11:38 left in the game.

With Ohio State threatening to make a late push, Fatts Russell drained a 3-pointer for Maryland to put the Terps back up eight points, and another three by Ayala gave Maryland an 11-point advantage with 4:17 to play. That shot forced Ohio State to take a timeout, and was part of an 11-3 run for the Terps.

By the 3:24 mark, Maryland went up 13 points as Ayala converted an and-one layup, and the Buckeyes failed to conjure up a resurgent stretch in the waning minutes. Fatts Russell knocked in his fifth 3-pointer of the game with 2:34 to go, and with Ohio State trailing by 15, the shot served as an exclamation point on the win.

Ohio State had four players hit double-digit scoring figures, with Branham and Cedric Russell leading the way with 13 and 12, respectively. But even with Ohio State's 22-2 edge in bench scoring, the Buckeyes suffered their most lopsided loss since Jan. 6.

What’s Next

The Buckeyes return home Tuesday for a 7 p.m. matchup with Nebraska to begin a three-game homestand to close out the regular season this week.

Game Notes

  • Ohio State utilized the same starting lineup for the sixth straight game, beginning with Jamari Wheeler, Malaki Branham, Eugene Brown, E.J. Liddell and Zed Key on the court.
  • Kyle Young and Justin Ahrens were the first two Buckeyes off the bench, subbing in for Key and Brown at the 17:08 mark.
  • Young and Cedric Russell started the second half in place of Key and Brown.
  • Ohio State defeated Maryland, 82-67, in the first meeting of the season between the two teams in Columbus on Feb. 6.
  • Either the Buckeyes or Terrapins have held a top 25 ranking in the AP poll in each of their past seven matchups.
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