Buckeyes Fall to Hawkeyes in Conference Opener
By Tony Gerdeman
#24 Ohio State (10-3, 0-1) overcame a 13-point second-half deficit to take a two-point lead over Iowa (11-3) late in the game, but the Buckeyes ultimately fell in overtime to the Hawkeyes 76-71.
Buckeye guard Tayler Hill scored a season-high 34 points on 11-25 shooting. She also added five rebounds and five steals, but turned the ball over seven times.
The first half was close throughout, with the largest lead being enjoyed by Iowa at just six points. Hill scored the Buckeyes' final 11 points of the first half, allowing Ohio State to take a 31-30 lead. Hill finished with 19 points in the first half.
Iowa immediately grabbed the lead back to start the second half with a layup by Samantha Logic, and then made it 34-31 with a layup by Theairra Taylor.
A pair of free throws by Jaime Printy and a jumper by Morgan Johnson made it 45-36 Iowa with 14:51 left in the half. A jumper by Taylor five minutes later gave the Hawkeyes their largest lead of the game at 55-42 with 9:55 remaining.
A layup by Raven Ferguson capped an 8-0 run for the Buckeyes, but Iowa came right back with a pair of layups to make it a nine-point game again with five minutes to play.
Ohio State then went on an 11-1 run, thanks to three baskets by Darryce Moore and a pair by Hill. The Buckeyes took the lead 61-60 on a Moore layup with 1:30 to play in the game.
Logic was sent to the free throw line with 1:22 remaining, making just one and tying the game at 61-61. A jumper by Hill gave the Buckeyes a two-point lead with 23 seconds to play, but Morgan Johnson answered back with a pair of free throws after a hard foul from Moore on a breakaway. Neither team would score again in regulation, sending the game to overtime tied at 63-63.
In overtime, Taylor scored six quick points for Iowa and the Buckeyes tried to keep pace.
"People took their eyes off of her," Buckeye coach Jim Foster said of the defense on Taylor.
"She back cut nicely. We got beat on some cuts inside. That, to me, is inexcusable."
A jumper by Bethany Doolittle then made it 71-67 with 1:37 to play, and the Hawkeyes only stretched the lead from there.
Hill was the only Buckeye to score in double figures, but Moore, Raven Ferguson and Ameryst Alston each added nine points.
"There comes a point in time where it's got to be...not forced," Foster said of Hill, who made 11 of her 25 shot attempts.
"There are some players out there that are very capable of putting ball in the basket, but when you're trying to go one on two or three, your chances of success are certainly not terrific. And obviously there's a couple of people open if two or three people are guarding you, there's somebody wide open."
Amber Stokes finished with just four points on 1-7 shooting while focusing on defending Printy, who only got eight shots up on the night.
Starting post players Ashley Adams and Aleksandra Dobranic combined for four points and seven rebounds. Iowa post players Johnson and Doolittle combined for 24 points and 17 rebounds.
"I think clearly the difference in the basketball game was their post players versus our post players," Foster said.
"I would say Ashley Adams didn't play aggressively, I'll say that without a doubt. I think Darryce and Martina played harder. Their two starting post players were 11-23 and our starting two post players were 2-9."
Up next for the Buckeyes is a home game Sunday against Illinois at 2pm.
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