Men’s basketball falls short in bout with Ohio State

By Krystal Ward

Men’s basketball (7-2, 0-0 MAC) put up a good effort, but fell short to Ohio State (5-5) 67-54 Wednesday in Columbus.

The Huskies were even with the Buckeyes for most of the game despite early foul trouble. Ohio State led 33-31, at the half. Sophomore center Marin Maric led the team with a career high 17 points. He scored 11 of his 17 points before the break.

Freshman guard Marshawn Wilson hit double figures with 14:46 left to play. He scored 16 points for the game, shooting 4-11 from the field.

The Buckeyes started to create some separation from the Huskies with 4:13 left in the game, pushing their lead to 57-50. Ohio State guard JaQuan Lyle drained a big three to put the home team up 63-54 with 1:38 to play and sealed the game.

NIU shot 26.8 percent (15-56) from the field for the game and grabbed 36 rebounds. The Buckeyes shot 39.2 percent (20-51) for the game and grabbed 44 rebounds.

Both teams shot well from the free throw line ¬NIU shot 79.2 percent (19-24) and the Buckeyes shot 63.3 percent (19-30).

NIU had 13 assists to Ohio State’s 10 and scored 16 points off of 14 Buckeyes turnovers. OSU scored 13 points off of 14 NIU turnovers.

The Huskies’ bench continued to be a force, outscoring the Buckeyes’ bench 28-9. Both teams scored 20 points in the paint.

“I thought it was a highly contested game,” said NIU head coach Mark Montgomery, according to a NIU Athletics news release. “I thought Ohio State made some key baskets late and their defense obviously bothered us, when you shoot 26 percent. They are long, they are athletic, it wasn’t our best shooting night, but you have to credit Ohio State.

“We had a few too many turnovers. With six minutes to go we were only down six, we had an opportunity to cut the lead but you have to shoot the ball well. Our guys competed, but they just had more weapons than us tonight and they made big shots.”

Ohio State had three players in double figures. Forward Jae’Sean Tate led the way with 17 points for the Buckeyes.

The Huskies will return home on Saturday when they host Florida International at the Convocation Center. Tipoff is scheduled for 2 p.m.