Ross leads No. 5 Buckeyes over CCSU
Columbus, OH (SportsNetwork.com) - LaQuinton Ross scored a game-high 23 points and grabbed six rebounds to lead the fifth-ranked Ohio State Buckeyes to a 74-56 victory over the Central Connecticut State Blue Devils.
Lenzelle Smith Jr. contributed 17 points and Amir Williams added 11 points for the undefeated Buckeyes (7-0), who will face Bryant on Wednesday.
Faronte Drakeford scored 12 and Matt Mobley contributed 10 points for Central Connecticut State (2-6).
Ohio State was heavily favored in this matchup and it showed in the opening moments of the game as they started with a 20-6 run capped off by an Aaron Craft layup.
The Buckeyes did, however, face some resistance from Central Connecticut State as they answered with an 8-2 run of their own.
With 4:29 left in the first half, the Blue Devils came within five points, 28-23, following a Khalen Cumberlander layup.
Ohio State countered as Ross capped an 8-0 spurt with a three point play to extend the lead with 2:55 to go.
During the final minute of the half, CCSU would trim the deficit to nine, 38-29, after Kyle Vinales' bucket at the buzzer.
Although the Blue Devils finished the first half strong, the Buckeyes maintained a comfortable lead in the second as they would not allow CCSU to come closer than eight points.
Ohio State used a 10-0 run with 13:02 left in the second to take control. Smith started the burst with a dunk and Ross scored the final two baskets of the spurt to extend the Ohio State advantage to 59-41.
The Blue Devils closed to within 13 late in the half but the Buckeyes ran off seven straight and built the lead to 20 with just under two minutes to play.
Ohio State leads the series 3-0 against the Blue Devils ... The Buckeyes are 9-0 against teams that are currently in the Northeast Conference ... Ohio State shot 52.7 percent (29-for-55) from the field, but just 23.5 percent (4- of-17) from beyond the arc.
12/07 19:50:28 ET