Some fans may have mistaken the Ohio State women’s basketball team for a track squad Thursday night.
The No. 12-ranked Buckeyes (18-1, 5-1 Big Ten) capitalized on several miscues by No. 20 Nebraska (15-3, 4-2 Big Ten), which resulted in 20 fast-break points and, eventually, an 82-68 victory.
“It’s like we’re all fast in all different ways,” senior guard Samantha Prahalis said after the game. “We all add something to defense that gives us offense, so I think that’s kind of scary.”
The Cornhuskers took the opening score against the Buckeyes, but it was the first and last time Nebraska would have the lead.
“There were 20 points in the game where we didn’t guard them because they either stole it from us or they leaked out and got an easy basket, so transition offense was really critical” said Nebraska coach Connie Yori. “I’m not sure our kids knew the quickness level that was going to be on the floor today.”
Although the Buckeyes were ahead for a majority of the game, the team understood the Cornhuskers were undefeated in the Big Ten when trailing.
“When I watched film on Penn State, it seemed like Penn State was in control but they kept coming back so I kind of knew that all of the momentum might be on someone’s side, but I knew they could still comeback,” Prahalis said.
Junior guard Tayler Hill led all Buckeye scorers with 21 points and 10 rebounds. Prahalis followed with 19 points and nine assists, while sophomore center Ashley Adams and redshirt junior Amber Stokes added 13 and 12 points respectively.
The Buckeyes were 32-of-61 from the field, while going 3-of-4 from 3-point range.
Nebraska was lead by freshman forward Emily Cady who contributed 24 points, while sophomore Jordan Hooper added 19 points.
The Buckeyes have won three straight games since suffering their first loss against Michigan on Jan. 7.
“I don’t think I’m coaching any sopranos, concert pianists, I haven’t seen a violin in the locker room. Basketball is their thing and if losing a basketball game sends you crazy then I got serious issues,” coach Jim Foster said. “It happened to my team last year, but they figured it out. Again it’s about today, and now it’s about Illinois.”
The win improves the Buckeyes to 3-0 this season against ranked opponents.
Before the game OSU and Nebraska were tied for second place in the Big Ten. The win puts the Buckeyes one game behind No. 13 Purdue (15-3, 5-0 Big Ten) for first place in the conference. The Buckeyes will meet the Boilermakers on Feb. 12 at the Schottenstein center.
While the Buckeyes can celebrate this victory, they will travel to Lincoln, Neb., on Feb. 26 to play the Cornhuskers again in the final game of the regular season.
The Buckeyes will next host Illinois on Sunday at 2 p.m. in the Schottenstein center.