Ohio State men, women win season openers
COLUMBUS — Playing its first game under its new coach, Ohio State looked invigorated in front of its home fans as it picked up its first win of the season against Robert Morris.
Keita Bates-Diop had 19 points and 11 rebounds to help the Buckeyes beat the Colonials 95-64 on Friday night in the season opener for both teams.
“Like good players and good teams, they take advantage of you when you’re relaxed or you don’t have the proper urgency,” Robert Morris coach Andrew Toole said. “And I think every time we did that, (Bates-Diop) took complete advantage.”
Kam Williams scored 16 points, Kaleb Wesson added 13 and seven rebounds and Musa Jallow scored 11 points, including three dunks.
Williams hit a 3-pointer during a 14-2 run that gave Ohio State an 18-8 lead with 12:16 remaining in the first half and the Buckeyes led by at least eight points the rest of the way.
“Ohio State started to build a lead, and then unfortunately we reverted a little bit to trying to make a homerun play, trying to make that eight-, nine-, 10-point play, and those things don’t happen,” Toole said.
The overmatched Colonials struggled to hit shots and deal with Ohio State’s size. The Buckeyes shot 60 percent from the field, outscored the Colonials 66-18 in the paint and outrebounded them 51-23. Robert Morris shot just 35 percent from the field.
Jae’Sean Tate, who led the Buckeyes in scoring last season at 14.3 per game, finished with seven points and seven rebounds. He had six of Ohio State’s 19 turnovers. Ohio State coach Chris Holtmann said his team’s 19 turnovers were his “overriding thought” following the 31-point victory.
“They forced us into some things and then we had some foolish plays as well,” Holtmann said.
Matty McConnell and freshman Koby Thomas scored 22 points apiece and combined to hit 7 of 13 from 3-point range for Robert Morris.
FIFTH-RANKED BUCKEYES TOP NO. 11 STANFORD: COLUMBUS — Kelsey Mitchell scored 30 points and Stephanie Mavunga added 17 points and a career-high 26 rebounds to help No. 5 Ohio State to an 85-64 win over 10th-ranked Stanford on Friday night in the season opener for both teams.
Ohio State dominated the pace of play in the third quarter, outscoring the Cardinal 24-14, despite shooting just 6 of 22 from the field in the quarter. The Buckeyes made 11-of-13 free throws in the period.
In the fourth, Mitchell put Ohio State up 21 with a 3-pointer at 8:03 remaining. The basket moved her into second on the Buckeyes’ all-time scoring list with 2,583 points.
Brittany McPhee scored 24 points to lead Stanford.
Ohio State overmatched the Cardinal on the glass, grabbing 64 rebounds compared to 41 for Stanford. Mavunga bested her previous career-high of 17 rebounds with 21 seconds remaining in the third quarter. She had 14 of Ohio State’s 28 offensive rebounds. Stanford tallied nine offensive rebounds.
Returning just two starters from last season, Stanford struggled to find scoring against an Ohio State defense that ranked 313th in total defense last season. The Cardinal shot 37 percent from the field compared to Ohio State’s 35 percent, but turned the ball over 15 times and had 19 fewer shots.
No other players were in double figures for Stanford.
Ohio State guard Linnae Harper also had a double-double, with 15 points and 11 rebounds.