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Women’s basketball: Buckeyes roll over Nittany Lions 87-72

Ohio State senior forward Shayla Cooper guards against Penn State’s forward Kaliyah Mitchell on Feb. 1 at the Schottenstein Center. Credit: Summer Cartwright | Senior Lantern Reporter

The Ohio State women’s basketball team continued its longest streak of season with its sixth straight win against Penn State on Wednesday, 87-72.

OSU (20-5, 10-1 Big Ten) was lead by junior forward Kelsey Mitchell in scoring (23) and assists (5). Sophomore forward Stephanie Mavunga picked up her tenth double-double of season with 11 rebounds and points.

Penn State coach Coquese Washington said OSU’s versatility makes them the best team head coach Kevin McGuff has had.

“They got great guard play,” she said. “They have fantastic post play and they can throw a lot of different looks at you. They went big there, and then they can go small and quick and spread the floor.”

Penn State came out in a 2-3 defense, which the Buckeyes were able to take advantage of. Throughout the first half the Buckeyes passed the ball well, allowing OSU to find their shot from the extra pass.

The Buckeyes shot 53.3 percent from the field and hit 50 percent from beyond the arc in the first half.

McGuff said the Buckeyes were finding the open man, which sophomore forward Sierra Calhoun capitalized on.

“Sierra shot the ball extremely well,” he said. “With as much zone as we see that’s really important and our players did a good job of moving the ball and finding her. She’s an outstanding shooter and you could see that tonight.”

Calhoun followed Mitchell in scoring for the Buckeyes with 17 total points, hitting five 3-pointers.

Defensively, the Buckeyes opened in a uncharacteristic 2-3 zone, forcing eight turnovers in the first quarter and 18 by the end of the game.

McGuff said the turnovers might’ve been related to OSU’s different defensive look.

“We played a little bit more zone, I wanted to give Penn State a different look than what they probably thought we were going to do,” he said. “I thought we were effective. We were active and energetic with our zone.”

In the second half, the Buckeyes kept up their offensive intensity. OSU was particularly a threat from deep and were able to pass the ball around Penn State’s defense, hitting six 3-pointers at 46.2 percent shooting from deep.

Penn State was lead by sophomore guard Teniya Page with 32 points. Page was followed by senior guard Sierra Moore with 8 points and she led the Nittany Lions with eight rebounds.

Ohio State will look to continue their winning streak at Wisconsin at 2 p.m. on Saturday.

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