Seven second-half 3-pointers sparked Ohio to a blow out 78-43 victory over Longwood University Monday night. It was compounded by Longwood turnovers and poor shooting that led to run outs as Ohio outscored the Lancers 36-15 in the second half.
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Ohio led by only four at the half. The Bobcats struggled to maintain possession of the ball over the first 20 minutes, turning it over nine times in that time frame. Coach Jim Christian's squad also shot poorly from beyond the arc in the half, going 3-of-15 from three-land. Unfortunately for the Lancers, star-playmaker Tristan Carey, who came in averaging 19.8 PPG and 6.6 rebounds a game to lead the team in both categories, picked up his second foul less than six minutes into the game. Carey struggled all evening, picking up seven points and two rebounds in limited minutes.
Longwood pestered the 'Cats, battling to keep the game within single digits for nearly the entirety of the half. Ohio was able to put together a short run and go up 10 on a corner three by T.J. Hall to make the score 28-18. The Lancers, who came into the game having won three of their last five games fought back with scrappy play, scoring several buckets in the waning moments of the half.
Longwood wilted under pressure in the second half and failed to execute offensively for the first dozen minutes of the second half. Ohio went on a 29-8 run to start the second half, going up 61-38 after holding just a four-point lead after the first 20 minutes. The Bobcats ran the floor well to start the second half, scoring fast-break buckets in bunches. Maurice Ndour got involved with an alley-oop and an easy bucket, and Nick Kellogg and Stevie Taylor both knocked down two 3-pointers in the gaudy stretch by the 'Cats.
It was a great defensive performance for Ohio, as Longwood came in averaging 78 points a game. The Lancers struggled in the Convocation Center shooting 31.4% on the game.
Five Bobcats players scored in double figures, and Kellogg led the way with 17 points. Guys like Hall (14 points) and Travis Wilkins (9 points) provided points that the Bobcats don't usually account for. The 'Cats, who found themselves in dire straights just a year ago when it came to rebounding, out-rebounded the Lancers 52-26.
Ohio moved to 9-3 and has another match up with a Big-South opponent, as its next game comes against UNC-Asheville on Jan. 4th.
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