The Minnesota Golden Gophers women’s basketball squad found a way to slow down the Ohio State fast-break attack Sunday.
The Golden Gophers (12-11, 4-5 Big Ten) held the No. 9 Buckeyes (20-2, 7-2 Big Ten) to their third-lowest point total this season en route to their 76-65 win against OSU.
Aside from the opening bucket, OSU played from behind the entire game. The deficit began early when the Buckeyes were down by 12 points with 7:41 in the first half, before closing the margin to six. With 30 seconds left in the half, Minnesota sophomore guard Sari Noga sank a 3-pointer to keep the lead, 34-28.
The Buckeyes rallied in the second half, with back-to-back 3-pointers by senior guard Samantha Prahalis to cut the lead to four with 5:51 remaining in the game. It was the closest OSU would come to catching the Golden Gophers. The following possession saw Minnesota sophomore forward Kionna Kellogg answer with a 3-point ball to put the score at 66-59.
Prahalis and junior guard Tayler Hill combined for 51 of the Buckeyes’ 65 points. Hill had 26 points, but was 3-of-11 from 3-point range, while Prahalis added 25 points and shot 4-of-9 from behind the arc.
The Golden Gophers were lead by freshman guard Rachel Banham with 20 points. Banham was followed by senior guard Kiara Buford, who added 15.
OSU shit 34.4 percent from the field Sunday, which makes Sunday’s loss the worst shooting performance for the Buckeyes this season. In its only other loss, OSU shot 36.8 percent against Michigan.
While the defeat gives the Buckeyes two losses in conference play, they’re still one game behind No. 17 Purdue (18-4, 8-1) for the lead in the Big Ten. The Boilermakers were defeated by Iowa, 59-42 on Saturday. The top two teams in the Big Ten will meet each other February 12 when Purdue travels to Columbus.
Players and coaches were not available for comment following the game.
OSU returns home Feb. 6 against the Wisconsin Badgers (7-13, 3-5 Big Ten). Tipoff is set for 7:30 p.m.