Playing on the same court on which the 2018 Final Four will take place, No. 5 Ohio State and No. 9 Louisville played a back-and-forth contest featuring a high pace and 60 combined 3-point attempts. But just two days after the Buckeyes took down No. 10 Stanford 85-64, they could not defeat their second top-10 opponent in a row.
Behind junior guard Asia Durr’s 47 points, the Louisville women’s basketball team staved off a fourth-quarter comeback from Ohio State which sent the game into overtime and beat the Buckeyes 95-90 Sunday evening at Nationwide Arena.
Durr hit shot after shot from beyond the arc, finishing 16-for-29 from the field and 9-for-15 on 3-point attempts. The Cardinals rode her to victory as she scored 13 of her team’s 15 overtime points.
Ohio State made a run late in the fourth quarter. Senior guard Kelsey Mitchell drilled a 3-pointer with 2:32 remaining to give Ohio State its first lead since the beginning of the third quarter. It came back from an eight-point deficit with 4:55 remaining to pull ahead of the Cardinals.
With Louisville leading by one point, redshirt senior forward Stephanie Mavunga rejected forward Myisha Hines-Allen’s shot with 10 seconds remaining. Mitchell recovered the ball and raced up the court, but was fouled by guard Jazmine Jones. She converted just one of two free throws to tie the game at 80.
Mitchell seemed nonexistent in the first half as she entered halftime with just three points. But the preseason All-American exploded down the stretch, scoring 23 of her 26 points in the in the second half. She added a game-high eight assists.
Ohio State redshirt senior guard Linnae Harper added 21 points and seven rebounds. Mavunga, who had 23 points and 26 rebounds against Stanford, was held in check for most of the game. She had just four points and six rebounds in 30 minutes. She and Mitchell fouled out in overtime.
Ohio State’s success — or failure — was based on its ability to hit 3-pointers. Ohio State made 17 of 40 3-pointers, but could not find consistent offense when it did not hit 3s. When the Buckeyes struggled to connect from deep, they fell behind while Louisville efficiently converted on 36-of-73 shots from the field and made 12-of-20 3-pointers. But when Ohio State hit consecutive triples, it pulled closer to Louisville.
Though Louisville led for 38:16 of the game, the Buckeyes constantly remained in striking distance. Ohio State led for just 4:02, but trailed by no more than nine points in the second half.
The Cardinals dominated the interior, collecting 47 rebounds while Ohio State grabbed just 29 boards. Of Louisville’s rebounds, 13 came on the offensive glass, which assisted them in putting up 15 second-chance points.
Ohio State found an unlikely source of offense in the first half in senior guard Asia Doss, who scored just three points in the season opener.
Down 21-13 with less than two minutes remaining in the first quarter, Doss found herself with the ball in her hands and the shot clock winding down. She launched a 3-pointer and swished the long-range shot. Then on the next possession, an open Doss drained her second shot from beyond the arc in a row.
Trailing by 13 points in the second quarter, Ohio State seemed in danger of falling behind by a deficit from which it could not recover. But Doss drained another 3-pointer, sparking the Buckeyes.
The Buckeyes went on a 14-2 run in the final 3:50 of the half to pull back within one point and went into halftime trailing 41-40. Mitchell punctuated the run when she hit her first shot of the game, a 3-pointer with 33 seconds remaining in the half.
She went 5-for-8 from 3-point range in the half and led the team with 17 points. No one else on her team had more than six first-half points. Doss finished with 19 points.
Ohio State will be back in action at 7 p.m. Wednesday when the Buckeyes take on Idaho in their first game of the season at the Schottenstein Center.