Ohio State cruises to win in opener
Columbus, OH (Sports Network) - Freshman Deshaun Thomas scored 24 points and grabbed eight rebounds off the bench, as the fourth-ranked Ohio State Buckeyes opened the season with a 102-61 rout of the North Carolina A&T Aggies.
Jared Sullinger added 19 points and 14 rebounds for the Buckeyes (1-0), who won the Big Ten tourney and advanced to the Sweet 16 in the NCAA Tournament last season. The only starter not returning this year for Ohio State is 2009-10 Big Ten Player of the Year Evan Turner, who went to the NBA.
"My job is to come out and play hard and keep the team hyped and motivated," Thomas said. "I just need to stay humble and learn how to become a better player."
Nic Simpson and Marc Hill each had 14 points for the Aggies (0-1), who went 11-22 last year.
"Ohio State is a very good team and a very deep team," Aggies head coach Jerry Eaves said. "It was a good opportunity for our team to play that level of talent. They had more offensive rebounds than our rebounds in total. They outrebounded us 60-22, so it could have gotten ugly. I was proud of my players though."
The Buckeyes didn't appear to miss Turner all that much, as Ohio State raced out to a 52-25 lead at the half.
The second half started with 12 unanswered points from the Buckeyes, who never looked back.
The Buckeyes are 86-22 in season openers all-time...Ohio State won the only other meeting between these two schools on the hardwood, taking a 93-58 decision from the Aggies back in January of 1994. The Buckeyes are a perfect 15-0 all-time against teams from the MEAC...This game was part of the Global Sports Invitational...The Buckeyes finished the 2009-10 season 29-8 overall. Dallas Lauderdale had 12 points and 13 boards for Ohio State, which held the visitors to 38.2-percent shooting from the field.
11/12 22:24:47 ET
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