Ohio State women's basketball stayed perfect in Big Ten play on Sunday, beating Rutgers 90-78 at Value City Arena. The Buckeyes, ranked fifth in the country, improved to 4-0 in the conference and 12-3 overall.
As usual, sophomore phenom Kelsey Mitchell led the way, leading all scorers with 31 points and dishing out six assists. Senior backcourt mate Ameryst Alston added 21 points, as Ohio State shot over 50 percent from the floor in outlasting the Scarlet Knights.
The Buckeyes took a 20-10 lead after one quarter thanks to 12 combined points from Mitchell and Alston. Sophomore Alexa Hart put up seven early points in the second quarter as Ohio State opened up a 40-25 lead, but freshman Khadaizha Sanders and senior Kahleah Copper kept Rutgers in contact. The advantage was 43-34 at halftime.
14 third quarter points from Mitchell helped the Buckeyes to blow things open. The Cincinnati native, along with Alston and Hart, sparked a 32-point quarter that ended with a 75-54 lead.
Rutgers refused to go away, though, going on an 11-1 run to start the fourth quarter. Junior Tyler Scalfe erupted for 12 of her team-high 27 points, while Ohio State missed nine of its first ten shots.
The lead was too much for the Scarlet Knights to overcome, though. A layup by Alston and a pair of free throws by Hart in the final two minutes put the game on ice, and the Buckeyes survived a very scrappy opponent.
Copper finished with a double-double, scoring 19 points and grabbing 11 rebounds, as Rutgers fell to 2-2 in the Big Ten. For her part in the battle down low, Hart had 17 points and 8 boards.
Up next for Ohio State will be a trip to Evanston to take on No. 14 Northwestern on Thursday night. The game tips off at 8:00 p.m. ET and will be televised live on BTN.