The No. 9 Ohio State Buckeyes showed up on its home court to show everyone why they are a top contender in the Big Ten on Wednesday when they beat out Idaho 99-56 in Columbus.
Idaho head coach Jon Newlee said in a news release that he was hopeful for a different outcome.
“We were getting wide open looks,’’ Newlee said. “If you told me we were going to get those kinds of looks with the way we have been shooting in practice and at Colorado State, I’d take it all day long. We had fantastic looks. We just couldn’t knock it down. I was disappointed with the panic from our younger guys. I felt like they were just overwhelmed by the stage. But it is a great learning lesson for them. I told them by March and we get into this environment again I think it will be a different story.”
Freshman guard Allison Kirby gave Idaho the first lead, going up 4-2 inside of the first two minutes of play. Ohio State’s Asia Doss hit a three-pointer to put OSU back up, 5-4. Idaho’s junior guard Taylor Pierce came back with another three-pointer to take the lead back, making the score 7-5 with 8:12 left of play.
For the rest of the game Ohio State dominated the court. The Buckeyes went on an 18-0 run, expanding their lead to 23-7 with two minutes of game left in the first quarter. Idaho managed to throw up a few more points to make the final score of the quarter 23-11.
Ohio State ran all around Idaho in the second quarter, outscoring the Vandals 26-13 to give the Buckeye’s a 49-24 lead at the half. Ohio State’s Stephanie Mavunga and Linnae Harper both had double-doubles at the break.
Idaho had their best shooting performance in the third quarter. The Silver and Gold hit 53 precent from the court. However, it was not enough to make a dent in the Buckeye lead. Ohio hit five threes in the quarter to yet again outscore Idaho 30-18.
Five Buckeyes scored in the double digits during the final quarter widening their lead even farther. Harper led the buckeyes with 18 points and 12 rebounds. Mavunga added 17 points and 14 rebounds. Kelsey Mitchell closed with 16 points.
Junior guard Mikayla Ferenz carried the Vandals with 17 points in the game and hit 1,000 career points in the second quarter.
“This is why we schedule games like this. We want to get in these big arenas. We want to play against top-10, top 20 teams and know what it is going to be like come March. That is where our program is at. We want to be able to compete with these teams. I am disappointed in the fact that we did not handle their pressure better,” Newlee said.
Idaho continues the road stretch with Abilene Christian at 12 p.m Saturday in Abilene, Texas.
Marisa Lloyd can be reached @arg-sports.uidaho.edu