EAST LANSING, Michigan — After a tough home loss to Illinois last week, Ohio State came out with an intensity that hasn’t been seen out of this team in a while.
Unfortunately, that intensity would not last into the second half as the Buckeyes suffered their second straight loss with a 62-44 blowout at the hands of Michigan State on the road, finishing off a season sweep of Ohio State for the Spartans.
Still stewing on their tough loss to Illinois on Thursday, Ohio State came out with a vengeance on Sunday against Michigan State as they jumped out to an impressive 14-5 lead over the No. 11 Spartans with 12:40 left in the first half.
Michigan State would claim the lead a couple times in the first half, but their lead was never larger than two points in the half as Ohio State took a shocking 31-25 lead over Michigan State at halftime.
The Spartans would come out hot out of the half with a quick 5-0 run on a pair of buckets by Kenny Goins, but both teams would fizzle out offensively as Ohio State held onto a 32-30 lead at the first media timeout.
The Spartans and Buckeyes both continued to struggle offensively for most of the second half as they found themselves tied at just 42 points with 7:40 left in the game.
That was when Michigan State exploded on Ohio State as they ended the game on a 20-2 run as they blew out the Buckeyes, 62-44.
The first half stats were great for Ohio State as they shot 40% from the floor and 50% from three-point range to take a 31-25 halftime lead over No. 11 Michigan State, but the second half was abysmal for the Buckeyes as they made just four of their 21 second half shot attempts as they fell to the Spartans, 62-44.
Turnovers would once again be the demise of the Buckeyes as, after only turning the ball over four times in the first half, they finished the game with a whopping 15 turnovers. To put that in perspective, Ohio State had almost as many turnovers (11) as they did points (13) in the second half.
Kaleb Wesson was the only Buckeye to finish with double-digit scoring in the blowout loss as he came close to a double-double with 12 points and nine rebounds.
With the loss, Ohio State falls farther from the .500 mark in conference play with a 6-8 Big Ten record and drop to 16-9 overall on the season. With only six games remaining in the regular season, the reality of making the NCAA Tournament is quickly becoming an unrealistic fantasy.
Ohio State will hope to get back in the win column this Wednesday, February 20th as they take on a struggling Northwestern team at home. Tip-off on Wednesday at Value City Arena is scheduled for 8:30pm ET and the game will be televised on Big Ten Network.
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