Lavender Sets Record; Buckeyes Outlast Gophers
By Tony Gerdeman
All-American center Jantel Lavender set
Ohio State's all-time career scoring mark (2,587 points) on Sunday, breaking
Katie Smith's old record of 2,578. Her 29 points led the Buckeyes
(15-9, 6-6) to an 83-76 win at Minneapolis over the Gophers (11-14,
Lavender finished the game 12-22 from
the field and grabbed nine rebounds. Not only did she set an Ohio
State record on Sunday, but she also set an NCAA record by scoring
ten or more points in 126 consecutive games. She has scored ten or
more points in every game of her career.
It wasn't just the Lavender Show for
the Buckeyes, however. Guard Brittany Johnson started out the game
by hitting a pair of three-pointers to get things going. Lavender
also added a couple of baskets at the outset, and the Buckeyes led
11-6 early on. But that was as wide as any margin got in the
Ohio State never trailed in the first
half, but there were seven ties in the first twenty minutes of
action. The last tie came with 31 seconds remaining in the first
half when Jackie Voigt hit a jumper to make it 36-36, which would end
up being the halftime score as well.
Voigt then hit a three-pointer
early in the second half to give the Gophers their first lead of the
game at 43-42. The Buckeyes regained the lead by two shortly
thereafter, but Voigt then hit another three to give the lead
back to the Gophers at 48-46. Voigt finished the game with 17 points
on 7-11 shooting, including 3-3 from behind the three-point line.
A pair of free throws from Gopher guard
Kiara Buford gave Minnesota a 50-46 lead, which was their
largest of the game.
Jantel Lavender scored six of
her team's next eight points to let OSU recapture the lead at 54-53. It
took the Gophers over five minutes to regain the lead, but they
held it for less than 30 seconds. Another three from Brittany
Johnson gave the Buckeyes the 63-62 lead with 7:13 remaining.
The game saw four more ties after
Johnson's basket, but the Buckeyes never again trailed. The
final score of 83-76 represented Ohio State's largest lead of the
Returning to her hometown of
Minneapolis, sophomore guard Tayler Hill put on a show for friends
and family, scoring 19 points while dishing out seven assists and
only turning it over once. She also had three steals for good
“Tayler Hill played an exceptional
game,” said assistant coach Debbie Black when talking to 1460 The
Fan after the game.
"Taylor had success early in the first half,
then she went away from it.
"Sometimes a player forgets what they're
doing well, so we told her to keep attacking because they couldn't
play her off the dribble.
"And then she was getting the calls at the
end of the game when we needed them. She just did a great job.”
As is generally the case on the road,
it took an entire team effort to close this game out, and it allows
the Buckeyes to gain a little more confidence.
“I think it's another step for us,”
“I think we've had a hard time closing games. The
mindset before has been 'Oh no, I hope we don't lose this one'. And
tonight, they pulled up their shorts and a lot of different players
stepped up to the plate.”
Freshman center Ashley Adams had a
double-double, scoring 13 points and grabbing ten rebounds. But her
six blocks and four assists were just as important as any of her
baskets and rebounds.
Brittany Johnson was 3-5 from
three-point land in the game, and each of her threes were important.
The first two set the tone for the Buckeyes in the first half, and
then her third in the second half stopped a Gopher run that could
have become quite dangerous.
Point guard Samantha Prahalis seems to
have fully gotten her distributional skills back. She handed out
eight assists and only turned it over twice. For the game, the
Buckeyes only had seven turnovers total, compared to 22 assists.
They also forced Minnesota into 16 turnovers of their own.
Up next for the Buckeyes is a home game
on Thursday night against #23 Penn State, who is currently in second
place in the Big Ten Conference.
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