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Ohio State rolls to 108-73 victory over Southern as Kelsey Mitchell hits 2,000 career points

With 23 points on the night, Mitchell became the fastest player in Division I to hit the mark.  

NCAA Womens Basketball: NCAA Tournament-Sioux Falls Regional-Ohio State vs Tennessee Steven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports

The Ohio State Buckeyes women’s basketball team followed up its 42-point win on Sunday with a 108-73 victory over the Southern Lady Jaguars of the SWAC, improving their record to 7-3 on the season. From the start, Ohio State was too quick on offense and too suffocating on defense for the Jaguars, who fell to 2-3 on the season.

With 23 points on the night, junior guard Kelsey Mitchell reached 2,000 points in her career at Ohio State in just 79 games, making her the fastest player in Division I to reach the mark and the seventh Buckeye to reach the mark in her career.

Freshman forward Tori McCoy had a career game off the bench, and was a perfect 10-for-10 from the field for 25 points. Four players for Ohio State hit double-digit points.

Sophomore guard Skylar O’Bear led the Jaguars in scoring with 19 points on the night. Overall, Southern shot 36 percent from the field, though they fared better from behind the arc, hitting 11 three-pointers on the night.

Southern opened up scoring with a two-point field goal a minute into play, but the Buckeyes responded with 19 unanswered points in a nearly five-minute scoring drought for the Jaguars. Ohio State led 33-13 at the end of the first, with Mitchell leading the team with eight points. Sophomore guard Sierra Calhoun was two-for-two on three point shots in the first quarter for the Buckeyes.

In the second quarter, Ohio State once again held the Jaguars scoreless for nearly four minutes as the Buckeyes scored 12 unanswered points. Ohio State maintained their defensive pressure throughout the second quarter, with their 2-3 zone proving to be too much for Southern.

The Buckeyes led Southern 60-30 at the half, shooting 61 percent from the floor to Southern’s 31 percent. Nearly half of Ohio State’s first-half points came off Southern’s 15 turnovers. While Mitchell led the team with 17 points, the Buckeyes managed to spread the ball effectively in the first half, with eight different players scoring and recording 14 assists as a team.

The offense did not let off the gas in the third quarter. Junior guard Asia Doss opened up the second half for Ohio State with a three-pointer less than two minutes into play. The defense eased off somewhat, though, as Southern recorded 29 points in the period to make the third quarter their most productive. Still, senior forward Shayla Cooper hit a two-point jumper for the Buckeyes as time expired to keep Ohio State up 31 heading into the final period.

Mitchell started the fourth quarter after sitting the end of the third, with just two points needed to hit the 2,000-point mark. The Buckeyes slowed things down on offense, with Mitchell dishing the ball to teammates rather than driving for the shot of her own. Then, with 3:54 left in the quarter, Mitchell hit two free throws to put her at the 2,000 point mark.

Next up, Ohio State faces Canisius on Sunday in Columbus. Tip-off is scheduled for 2 p.m. with the game televised on BTN Plus.