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(Thursday, February 3rd)
Final Score: (1) Ohio State 62, Michigan 53
Columbus, OH (Sports Network) - Jared Sullinger posted 19 points and 15 rebounds to power top-ranked Ohio State past Michigan, 62-53, at Value City Arena.
William Buford supplied 13 points and four assists while David Lighty contributed nine points and six rebounds for the Buckeyes (23-0, 10-0 Big Ten), who are off to the second-best start in school history.
Ohio State has won 27 consecutive regular season games, 18 straight at home and 17 conference games in a row.
Tim Hardaway Jr. provided 15 points and five rebounds while Darius Morris chipped in 12 points, four boards and four assists for the Wolverines (13-10, 3-7), who had won two in a row on the heels of a six-game slide coming into the game.
Trailing 34-32, Ohio State went on a 12-2 surge to take an eight-point lead on a Buford trifecta and a Lighty foul shot with 9 1/2 minutes left in the game.
Michigan closed to within 44-42 before Sullinger scored eight of the next 10 points for the hosts to extend the lead to 54-45 with 3 1/2 minutes to go.
Lighty and Aaron Craft combined to make six foul shots in the final minute to sew up the Buckeyes' 35th victory in their last 36 home dates.
"They like to win, they are very intuitive in preparation," Ohio State head coach Thad Matta said about how his team plays in the second half. "They are dialed in and I think they enjoy each other's company. They have respect for each other and don't want to let each other down."
Ohio State scored the first seven points before Michigan rallied to tie it at 14 on a Zack Novak triple with 11:39 to go in the first half.
Stu Douglass canned a jumper to give the Wolverines their first lead at 20-19 with just under seven minutes remaining and the visitors scored the last four points of the half to take a 26-23 lead at the break.
"I told them we can win the game," Michigan head coach John Beilein said when asked what he said to his players at halftime. "You're up in the game and you can play with these guys. We tried to make more adjustments about how they were playing us. They did a great job and took us out of some things."
The Buckeyes' best start in program history was 1960-61 when they won their first 27 games en route to the NCAA title game...The 23-game win streak is also the second longest overall in school history behind only the 32 straight games won over the 1959-60 and 1960-61 seasons...Ohio State leads the all-time series, 89-71 and has won all six games against Michigan while ranked number one...Sullinger made 7-of-10 from the floor but only 5-of-11 at the foul line...Hardaway was 6-of-11 from the floor, including 3-for-7 from long distance as the Wolverines made 6-of-19 three-point shots...Ohio State was 15- of-25 at the line while Michigan was 1-of-4, the only make by Douglass with 4 1/2 minutes left in the game.
02/03 23:34:20 ET
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