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Buckeyes' 3-point shooting leads them past Hoosiers

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

By RUSTY MILLER

AP Sports Writer

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- William Buford scored 19 points and Ohio State caught fire behind the arc to beat Indiana 77-53 on Tuesday night.

Jon Diebler added 17 points, B.J. Mullens 14, Evan Turner 13 and Jeremie Simmons 12 for Ohio State (12-3, 2-2 Big Ten), which has split six games since starting 9-0. Simmons added eight assists, while Turner and Diebler each had five.

The Buckeyes took control by hitting 11 of 16 3-pointers in the first half. They made four consecutive shots behind the arc to start an 18-0 run that pushed the lead into double figures.

Tom Pritchard had 16 points and 11 rebounds, with Verdell Jones III adding 12 for the Hoosiers (5-11, 0-4), who lost their seventh in a row.

Indiana came into the game last in the Big Ten in defense against 3-pointers. Ohio State finished 13 of 24.

Ohio State has hit more 3-pointers in a half only once before -- 12 at Michigan three years ago.

Down by 16 at the break, the Hoosiers got as close as 47-34 by scoring six of the first eight points, but got no closer the rest of the way.

One of the biggest cheers of the second half came when ESPN sideline reporter Erin Andrews, who was working the game, was pictured on the arena monitors.

The Buckeyes broke out to a 44-28 halftime lead, with three-quarters of their points coming from behind the arc. They hit eight of their first nine 3-pointers.

Undermanned Indiana trailed just 15-10 after Malik Story's short jumper at the 13:35 mark. But the Buckeyes reeled off the next 18 points to take control. The first four baskets in the run were 3-pointers -- two by Buford and one each for Diebler and Simmons.

The Hoosiers were 0 for 6 with two turnovers while drawing a blank for almost 6 1/2 minutes.

The game pitted two of the youngest teams in the country. The Buckeyes don't have a senior on the roster and do not have a current player who saw action as recently as two seasons ago. Meanwhile, Indiana, scarred by NCAA violations under the regime of the fired Kelvin Sampson, started four true freshman and a junior.

Indiana's leading scorer, Devan Dumes, was listed as doubtful for the game after spraining an ankle late in Saturday's 76-45 loss at Illinois, when the Illini hit 13 of 25 3-pointers. But he was able to start the game, wearing a protective brace on the ankle. He had eight points in 32 minutes.

Before the game, Ohio State disclosed that Nikola Kecman would miss the remainder of the season after sustaining a torn ligament in his left knee during Monday's practice. Kecman, a 6-foot-8 transfer from Eastern Arizona College, played well in his only game before the injury.

OHIO ST. 77, INDIANA 53

INDIANA (5-11)

Pritchard 7-14 2-3 16, Moore 0-2 0-0 0, Jones III 4-9 3-4 12, Williams 4-8 0-0 8, Dumes 3-12 0-0 8, Roth 0-3 0-0 0, Finkelmeier 0-0 0-0 0, Gambles 0-0 0-0 0, Lewis 0-0 3-4 3, Story 1-6 0-0 2, Jobe 0-0 0-0 0, Taber 1-3 2-2 4. Totals 20-57 10-13 53.

OHIO ST. (12-3)

Lauderdale 0-0 0-0 0, Simmons 3-9 3-4 12, Turner 4-6 4-5 13, Diebler 6-11 0-0 17, Buford 7-15 1-1 19, Offutt 0-1 0-0 0, Hill 0-1 0-0 0, Madsen 1-2 0-0 2, Mullens 7-8 0-1 14. Totals 28-53 8-11 77.

Halftime--Ohio St. 44-28. 3-Point Goals--Indiana 3-16 (Dumes 2-7, Jones III 1-2, Moore 0-1, Roth 0-3, Story 0-3), Ohio St. 13-24 (Diebler 5-8, Buford 4-7, Simmons 3-7, Turner 1-1, Hill 0-1). Fouled Out--Turner, Williams. Rebounds--Indiana 36 (Pritchard 11), Ohio St. 30 (Mullens 8). Assists--Indiana 8 (Jones III, Taber 2), Ohio St. 23 (Simmons 8). Total Fouls--Indiana 15, Ohio St. 13. A--15,661.



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