Ohio State women's basketball ended 2022 on a high note thanks to a win over Michigan on Saturday.
In front of a capacity crowd at the 3,700-seat Covelli Center, the No. 3 Buckeyes defeated the No. 14 Wolverines, 66-57, to advance to 15-0 this season – a record that ties the best start in program history, matching the record put up by the 2011-12 team led by former head coach Jim Foster.
|#3 OHIO STATE||9||21||20||16||66|
Taylor Mikesell led Ohio State with 16 points on 4-of-16 shooting, while Rikki Harris and Cotie McMahon added 14 and 12, respectively. Harris also paced the Buckeyes with three assists, and Taylor Thierry had a team-high 10 rebounds. Michigan was led by Cameron Williams, who had 18 points and 10 rebounds for the Wolverines.
As a team, Ohio State made only 21 of 60 shot attempts for a 35% mark against the Wolverines. The Buckeyes were also cold from behind the 3-point line and converted just 5 of 23 attempts from deep. Despite those numbers, head coach Kevin McGuff's squad held their own defensively and limited Michigan to 19-of-51 shooting (37%) with a 2 of 17 mark from behind the arc (12%) to beat their rivals.
How it Happened
Ohio State started off slow against their rivals from Ann Arbor, as the Wolverines jumped out to an early 8-0 lead. However, the Buckeyes answered with a run of their own and outscored Michigan 9-2 in the quarter's final minutes to trail by one point, 10-9, as the buzzer sounded to end the frame.
In the second quarter, Ohio State's offense, which ranked No. 1 in the Big Ten entering the matchup with Michigan, came alive as the Buckeyes scored 21 points compared to the Wolverines' 17. Additionally, the quarter ended with a momentum-changing play for Ohio State. As the clock winded down, Mikesell dished a pass to Emma Shumate outside the arc, where she connected on a 3-point attempt to send the Buckeyes into the half with a 30-27 lead.
After the break, Ohio State took command of the contest and led by as many as 16 points late in the third quarter. However, Michigan collected itself and found a rhythm offensively. In the final two minutes and change, the Wolverines went on a 9-2 run and narrowed the Buckeyes' lead to 50-41 entering the fourth.
|21-60 (35.0%)||FGM-FGA (PCT.)||19-51 (37.3%)|
|5-23 (21.7%)||3PM-3PA (PCT.)||2-17 (11.8%)|
|19-25 (76.0%)||FTM-FTA (PCT.)||17-28 (60.7%)|
Ohio State's advantage continued to shrink as the clock ticked down in the final frame, as Michigan opened the quarter on another 9-2 run – or an 18-4 run overall, when combined with the run at the end of the third – to cut the Buckeyes' lead to 52-50 with a little under seven minutes left in the game.
From that point forward, Harris became the X-factor for Ohio State and scored five of the next nine points, with each of those points coming at the charity stripe. Rebeka Mikulasikova also made a crucial 3-pointer, which was also her first field goal of the contest, with 3:01 remaining to extend the Buckeyes' lead to 64-52.
After that, the Wolverines had a few final punches that did not phase Ohio State, and the Buckeyes held on, using strong defense and smart clock management to run away with a 66-57 win in Columbus.
- Jacy Sheldon missed her 10th game of the season with a foot injury. The star guard has not played for Ohio State since the Buckeyes defeated Louisville in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge on Nov. 30 and has no timetable for a return to the team.
- During the Buckeyes' 88-86 overtime win against South Florida on Dec. 20, Madison Greene fell to the floor while driving to the basket. After that point, she could not put any weight on her left leg. The program later confirmed that Greene's season is over with a knee injury.
- Ohio State's game in the Covelli Center is expected to be a one-time occurrence this season, according to a program spokesperson. The Buckeyes will return to the Schottenstein Center for their remaining home games in 2022-23.
Ohio State does not return to the hardwood until Thursday, when the Buckeyes will travel to Minneapolis to battle with the Minnesota Golden Gophers in The Barn. Tip-off for that contest is set for 8 p.m. ET.