Men's Basketball

Buckeyes Can’t Overcome Mistakes, Lose at Home to Illinois 63-56

Duane Washington, Luther Muhammad Ohio State Buckeyes

COLUMBUS — Eleven seconds into the game, Ohio State (16-8, 6-7) turned the ball over without much defensive effort from Illinois, and things didn’t get much better for the Buckeyes from there in a 63-56 home loss to the Illini (10-15, 6-8).

Ohio State turned the ball over 18 times on the night and dished out just eight assists. And in the rare instance when they actually got a shot up, they made just 36.2% of their attempts. They shot 2-of-13 from three-point territory, including 0-of-7 in the second half.

Illinois, meanwhile, was led once again by their trio of young players, as sophomore guard Trent Frazier (15 points), freshman guard Ayo Dosunmu (15 points), and freshman center Giorgi Bezhanishvili (13 points) combined for 43 points on a combined 16-of-30 shooting.

Ohio State scored the first four points of the game and it would represent their largest lead of the night.

A fastbreak layup from Ayo Dosunmu gave Illinois a one-point lead at 13-12 with eight minutes played in the first half. The Illini would then go on a 7-0 run a few minutes later to make it 27-18 Illinois.

The Buckeyes fought back for the rest of the half, and a pair of free throws by CJ Jackson cut the lead to three points with under two minutes to play. Three free throws for Illinois opened the lead back up to six, but Kaleb Wesson closed out the half with a three to cut the Illini lead to 30-27 at the intermission.

Illinois made it a seven-point game with a three from Trent Frazier with 15:54 to play, but then Ohio State responded with a 7-0 run to tie the game, capped by a CJ Jackson three-point play.

Jackson led all scorers with 17 points. He also led all players with seven turnovers.

Illinois scored the next four points, but that run was put on hold thanks to a two-handed dunk from freshman Duane Washington. A little over a minute later, Washington threw another powerful slam down while getting fouled. The ensuing free throw gave the Buckeyes a 45-44 lead with 8:28 remaining. It appeared that Ohio State had grabbed the momentum.

Missed layups and a turnover kept OSU from building a lead and a three-pointer from Dosunmu extended the Illinois lead to five points with 4:37 remaining. The Buckeyes had the lead down to three with 29 seconds remaining and Dosunmu drained another three to put Ohio State on the canvas for good.

OSU post players Kaleb Wesson and Kyle Young both fouled out, forcing Chris Holtmann to play small for stretches. Along with some periodic zone defense, Illinois was stymied at times, but several of these instances led to second-chance points via offensive rebounds.

Illinois had the answers throughout the game and the Buckeyes could never fully get out of their own way to make the most of each possession.

The Star

Illinois’ freshman duo of Ayo Dosunmu and Giorgi Bezhanishvili have been on a tear over the last two weeks and that continued Thursday night in Value City Arena. Both players took turns coming up big throughout the game, and a pair of threes down the stretch for Dosunmu were key. Undervalued may have been Bezhanishvili’s ability to put multiple fouls on both Kyle Young and Kaleb Wesson.

Quick Hits

+ Duane Washington had two monster dunks in this game but couldn’t find the three-point range that could have put Ohio State over the top. He missed all three of his attempts from beyond the arc.

+ Also missing each of his three three-pointers was fellow freshman Luther Muhammad. Muhammad missed all six field goal attempts and didn’t score until a pair of free throws late in the game.

The Box Score

[Duane Washington photo courtesy OhioStateBuckeyes.com.]

8 Responses

  1. Turnovers, turnovers, turnovers. Are our athletes so inferior that they are overwhelmed by their opponents? Do we freeze up in the face of adversity? What is the cause? Fix it. That’s why we have coaches.

  2. Thanks for info Tony sorry I was so hard them,hope they prove me wrong.Go Bucks!

  3. They just flat out stink!They have to recruit better.That was a bad loss at home.They will be 1 and done in Big 10 tourny and will be lucky to even make NIT!

    1. The good news for you is that Holtmann is recruiting better. The current freshman class was about as good as Buckeye fans could have hoped for, and the incoming class is top 10.

  4. Like the previous commenters said, TOO damn many turnovers, 7 by the senior point guard. He cannot handle the press and he shoots too many stupid shots. I too am glad he and Woods are seniors. Woods has been a disappointment. Then there’s Luther, OMG, some of the dumb and ill advised shots. I know he’s only a freshman, there two freahmen made our defenders look foolish. Kalevala Wesson has no heart period. He can’t desk with someone pushing him. I will say this the refs screwed the pooch and the double foul with him and that Illinois punk. It was very clear the Illinois kid punched Wesson, which led to the other crap. This Illinois kid should have been assessed a Flagrant 2 and ejected. Not sure what those dumb ass refs were looking at. The one ref, last name is Berry didn’t have a hair out of place all night. But the refs are t the reason the Bucks are losing games stupidly, poor preparation and execution. I will be glad when the Carton kid gets here next year. Holy man needs to look for a big post player. Kaleb cannot cut it. Young is doing well. I would have played Ledee some last night. That big kid from Illinois was gettin by with crap all night.
    Look out Sunday. Kaleb will be lucky to score 10 points against Ward. Ward is another Matt’s screw up, didn’t recruit him, he was hell bent on getting 5 stars from out of state.

  5. I miss Aaron Craft.
    This was an unusually poor shooting night, and then with our propensity to turning the ball over, game over.
    And at home? That was strange.

  6. I’m glad this is Woods and Jackson’s last year. I wish it was Kaleb’s last year. He’s a dud. I’d be happy to have the Ilinois center.

  7. A perfectly executed “how to” on losing a basketball game: poor shooting, massive turnover numbers, and foul trouble. That’s the only way a team that was 6 games under .500 can beat you AT HOME. Horribly played.

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