Tuesday, December 24, 2002

Ohio St. 96, Radford 80



COLUMBUS, Ohio - Being run ragged by Radford's smaller players, Ohio State found success with a four-guard lineup. The change sparked a 10-0 run that gave the Buckeyes the lead for good and held down Raymond Arrington, whose hot start had given the Highlanders an early seven-point edge.

After switching to a zone defense that used one player to chase Arrington, Ohio State quickly opened up a double digit lead in the second half and cruised to a 96-80 victory Monday night.

"In the first half, we had a difficult time guarding Arrington," Ohio State coach Jim O'Brien said. "We decided to concentrate on limiting his touches."

After scoring 18 points in the first half, Arrington got just nine after halftime for the Highlanders (2-7).

Radford coach Byron Samuels was surprised by Ohio State's defensive scheme.

"That definitely gave us some problems," he said. "When Radford is coming to Columbus to play Ohio State, you don't expect to see a junk defense," Samuels said.

Sean Connolly scored 20 points and Emonte Jernigan sparked the key first-half run that helped Ohio State overcome its sluggish start.

Jernigan, getting extended playing time after forward Zach Williams picked up his second foul, had two layups - one off his own steal - in a 10-0 run that put the Buckeyes (5-3) ahead 31-24.

Jernigan also hit two of his three 3-point attempts and scored 10 of his 12 points in the first half as the Buckeyes took a 43-37 halftime lead.

Jernigan had struggled for most of the season, his first at Ohio State since transferring from Santa Rosa Junior College.

"For some reason it's not been going easy for me," he said. "Hopefully this will get me going."

Samuels said Jernigan and Ohio State's 10-of-19 performance from 3-point range made the difference.

"We didn't think Ohio State had a quickness advantage at all, but give them credit for knocking down shots because Jernigan, especially, hasn't been making them," Samuels said.

Connolly scored 14 of his points - 12 on 3s - in the first half. The senior guard hit 6-of-8 3-pointers and has made 13-of-21 beyond the arc in his last three games.

"We're always telling him to look at shooting the basketball," O'Brien said. "As long as he's open, he has the green light."

Connolly couldn't pinpoint a reasons for his success.

"I've felt really good with my shot the last week and a half," he said. "I don't know what it is. This is definitely the most conformable I've felt since I've been here."

Whit Holcomb-Faye had 20 points and nine assists, and Olumuyiwa Popoola had 11 points for Radford.

Velimir Radinovic added a career-high 19 points and eight rebounds, Brent Darby had 19 points and eight assists, and Williams had 14 points for the Buckeyes.

The Highlanders made 15-of-26 3-point attempts after making only 13 field goals in a 97-64 loss at Akron on Saturday.

Because of injuries, Ohio State used just six players for most of the game. Point guard Brandon Fuss-Cheatham, recovering from surgery to repair torn cartilage in his left knee, played just five minutes in the first half. Center Terence Dials missed his second straight game with back spasms.


RADFORD (80)

                          fg    ft    rb             
                   min   m-a   m-a   o-t   a  pf   tp
A Gill              22   2-4   2-2   2-5   0   5    8
J Bees              19   2-3   0-0   1-3   0   5    4
R Arrington         40  8-16   4-4   0-4   0   3   27
D Popoola           28   4-9   1-2   0-6   1   4   11
W Holcomb-Faye      38  8-11   2-4   1-2   9   4   20
M James              8   0-0   0-0   0-2   2   1    0
C Goodin            11   3-5   0-0   0-0   0   3    8
C Prince             1   0-0   0-0   0-0   0   0    0
R Noiles             2   0-0   0-0   0-0   0   0    0
A Bynum             13   0-1   0-0   0-0   0   1    0
C Lispcomb           4   0-1   0-0   0-0   0   1    0
K Zaharias          14   1-2   0-0   0-1   0   1    2
  
_____________________________________________________
TOTALS             200 28-52  9-12  4-23  12  28   80
_____________________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.538, FT-.750. 3-Point Goals:
15-26, .577 (A Gill 2-2, R Arrington 7-12, D 
Popoola 2-5, W Holcomb-Faye 2-4, C Goodin 
2-2, A Bynum 0-1). Team Rebounds: 0. Blocked 
Shots: 1 (K Zaharias). Turnovers: 16 (W 
Holcomb-Faye 5, M James 3, R Arrington 2, D 
Popoola 2, J Bees 2, C Goodin, C Lispcomb). 
Steals: 5 (D Popoola 3, A Gill 2).

OHIO ST (96)

                          fg    ft    rb             
                   min   m-a   m-a   o-t   a  pf   tp
Z Williams          31   4-9   6-8   2-3   2   3   14
V Radinovic         37   5-5  9-11   5-8   0   2   19
B Fuss Cheatham      5   1-2   0-1   0-0   1   1    2
S Connolly          38  6-11   2-2   1-6   3   2   20
B Darby             38  4-11 10-11   1-5   8   2   19
C Bass               1   0-0   0-0   1-1   0   0    0
U Nwankwo            1   0-0   0-0   0-0   0   0    0
E Jernigan          22   5-7   0-1   1-1   1   3   12
S Smith              2   1-1   3-4   0-0   0   0    5
M Sylvester         21   2-7   0-0   0-3   3   1    5
N Sherman            1   0-0   0-0   0-0   0   0    0
M Marinchick         3   0-1   0-0   0-0   0   1    0
  
_____________________________________________________
TOTALS             200 28-54 30-38 11-27  18  15   96
_____________________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.519, FT-.789. 3-Point Goals:
10-19, .526 (S Connolly 6-8, B Darby 1-7, E 
Jernigan 2-3, M Sylvester 1-1). Team 
Rebounds: 4. Blocked Shots: 1 (V Radinovic). 
Turnovers: 14 (V Radinovic 3, Z Williams 3, B
Darby 2, M Sylvester 2, S Connolly, B Fuss 
Cheatham, E Jernigan, N Sherman). Steals: 5 
(V Radinovic 2, Z Williams, B Fuss Cheatham, 
E Jernigan).


-----------------------------------
RADFORD              37  43   -  80
OHIO ST              43  53   -  96
----------------------------------- 

Technical fouls: Radford 1 (Team). A: 13,471. 
Officials: Mike Sanzere, Sam Lickliter, Tom Clark



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