Second-Half Struggles Doom Buckeyes In Loss At Indiana: Three-Point Recap

Ohio State took a 46-37 lead on Indiana by opening the second half with an 8-0 run, but the Buckeyes (12-3, 2-2) couldn’t hold on to their good fortune and ultimately fell to the Hoosiers (11-4, 3-1) 71-65 after shooting just 8-of-34 (23.5%) from the field over the game’s final 18 minutes.

Indiana forward Malik Reneau led all scorers with 23 points, and he was unstoppable in the second half, where he scored 19 of his points on 8-of-11 shooting. Guard Xavier Johnson added 18 points, including 8-of-11 from the free throw line.

The Buckeyes were led by forward Jamison Battle’s 17 points. The only other scorer in double figures was center Zed Key, who contributed 11 points and five rebounds in 17 minutes.

Backcourt Struggles

One of the reasons Ohio State’s starting backcourt of Bruce Thornton and Roddy Gayle is so good is that they can generally overcome a poor night from the perimeter because both players can drive the lane or hit from mid-range. On Saturday night, however, nothing was falling for the duo as they combined to shoot 7-of-34 from the field and 0-of-12 from three-point territory. They also only combined for four free throw attempts, which is unlike either of them as both can get to the basket and draw fouls regularly. They each scored nine points in this game. This is likely to be their worst collective game of the year. They can chalk it up to an off night, and they wouldn’t be wrong, but this was a game the Buckeyes could have had with just a little better shooting from the guards.

On The Rebound

With Ohio State shooting 25-of-69 (36.2%) from the field, that led to a ton of offensive rebounds for the Buckeyes. Ohio State finished with 22 offensive rebounds, which was actually two more rebounds than Indiana finished with on the defensive glass. Ohio State outrebounded the Hoosiers 49-27 and outscored IU 24-9 in second-chance points, but Indiana was a much more efficient outfit overall, especially in the second half.

A Year In The Making

Ohio State hasn’t won a road game in Big Ten play since New Year’s Day … of 2023. The Buckeyes have lost 11 conference road games in a row — including both road games this season. Ohio State led each of those two games this year by at least nine points in the second half but failed to hold on to a victory. The Buckeyes’ next attempt for a road win will come on January 15 in Ann Arbor. Ohio State’s last win at Michigan came in 2022 when EJ Liddell scored 28 points in a 68-57 victory.

The Box Score

[Zed Key header photo courtesy of Ohio State Dept of Athletics/Twitter.]

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