Men's Basketball

Ohio State’s Season Ends Following Heartbreaking 79-77 Loss to Georgia

COLUMBUS, Ohio — In a back-and-forth game of runs, Ohio State’s 2023-24 season has come to an end. The No. 2 Seed Ohio State fell short 79-77 to the No. 4 seed Georgia in the NIT quarterfinal game on Tuesday night.

Jamison Battle had the ball with 1.3 seconds remaining, but his 3-point attempt hit the front of the rim as the buzzer rang and time expired.

Battle led the Buckeyes with 22 points and was 4-of-9 from 3. Bruce Thornton had his second career double-double, contributing 13 points and 10 assists. Felix Okpara gave the Buckeyes 12 points on 6-of-10 shooting, with seven rebounds and two blocks. Roddy Gayle Jr. contributed 11 points and four assists. As a team, Ohio State had 21 assists on 31 baskets.

The game featured nine lead changes with the Bulldogs leading 36-35 at halftime following a 6-0 run by Georgia, a 7-0 run by the Buckeyes to tie the game at 15, and another 8-0 run to trail by one at the break.

Both teams traded runs in the second half. The Bulldogs lit up coming out of halftime, reaching a 60-47 lead with 12 minutes to play. A 3 pointer from Battle followed up by a dunk by Battle made it a four point game with 7:38 to play. Ohio State took the 65-64 lead on a 3-point shot from Bonner with 5:51 to play, extending its run to 12-0.

Okpara blocked a shot, Ohio State turned it over, it ended up back in Ohio State’s hands. Dale Bonner sealed the possession with a dunk to make it 67-64. Battle sunk a 3 and it was a 70-64 lead for the Buckeyes on a 17-0 run. Georgia tied it up at 70 and Battle dunked to give the Buckeyes the 72-70 lead with 3:24.

The Buckeyes got the ball with 10 seconds remaining, trailing 79-77. Thornton missed a jumper, but on a rebound that went out of bounds, it was Buckeye basketball with 1.3 to play. Battle attempted a 3 but it was no good and the clock expired with Georgia up 79-77.

Georgia was led by guard Noah Thomasson, who gave the Bulldogs 21 points. Guard Blue Cain contributed 17 points for Georgia and was 4-of-9 from behind the arc.

Ohio State finished the season with 22 wins and 14 losses.

Photo via Ohio State Dept. of Athletics. 

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