The rivalry continued Thursday night as the Ohio State women’s basketball upset Michigan in a dog fight at Value City Arena.
A big fourth quarter allowed Ohio State (9-6, 2-2 Big Ten) to earn its third ranked win of the season with a 78-69 victory over the No. 24 Wolverines (11-4, 2-2).
Ohio State outscored the Wolverines 23-14 in the final frame to run away with the victory while shooting 72 percent in the quarter.
The Buckeye defense came alive in the last 15 minutes, holding the Wolverines without a bucket for over half the period. Ohio State used the scoring drought to go on a 9-0 run to take a late 68-61 lead, which it never relinquished.
The Wolverines were led by sophomore forward and Ohio native Naz Hillmon, who posted her fourth double-double of the season with 24 points and 15 rebounds –– nine of which came off the offensive glass.
However, the Buckeyes limited her to just six points in the second half.
“It was huge, we just needed to quiet her down,” Buckeyes junior guard Braxtin Miller said.
Michigan senior forward Kayla Robbins added 17 points of her own on 7-of-11 shooting.
The Buckeyes limited the hot hand of Wolverines sophomore guard Amy Dilk –– who scored 23 or more in two of her past four games –– holding her to 3-for-16 shooting and just seven points.
Ohio State’s struggled in the paint, however, as it was outscored by the Wolverines 44-24 in the lane. It made up for this deficiency by shooting uncharacteristically well from beyond the arc.
The Buckeyes hit 11 of their 22 3-point attempts, where they shoot 28 percent on the season.
Sophomore forward Dorka Juhasz, normally a 27 percent 3-point shooter, came alive from beyond the line and finished 3-for-4.
“I see us shoot in practice and I don’t think the numbers reflect our abilities,” Ohio State head coach Kevin Mcguff said.
Freshman guard Madison Greene put together one of her best performances this year as she finished with 23 points on 8-for-10 shooting, including a huge layup to put the Buckeyes ahead by five with 27 seconds to play.
“She’s going by leaps and bounds right before our eyes,” Mcguff said. “Her performance in a game of this magnitude was just incredible.”
A pair of free throws by Greene iced the game as it wound down. She also finished with two assists and no turnovers, adding to her conference-best assist to turnover ratio.
“I’d say for sure our spark was Madison,” Miller said.
The Buckeye bench played a huge role in the game as they outscored Michigan’s 28-6. The reserves were led by two-time Big Ten freshman of the week guard Kierstan Bell, who finished with 15 points on 60 percent from 3.
“She really kept us in it,” Mcguff said. “She played really hard and when she plays that hard and is locked in like that she’s really special.”
Freshman forward Rebeka Mikulášiková added 8 points off the pine, hitting two 3s of her own.
Miller came alive down the stretch, scoring 11 points on 5-of-7 shooting in the second half.
Ohio State will be back in Value City Arena for a 2 p.m. tipoff Sunday against Penn State.