COLUMBUS, Ohio – Thad Matta knows he has one scorer. Now he is trying to develop others.
Bishop Luers grad Deshaun Thomas had 18 points, including a three-pointer in an 11-point run in the first half, to lead No. 7 Ohio State past tired Long Beach State 89-55 on Saturday.
The Buckeyes need more than the one option – passing the ball to the always-ready-to-shoot Thomas – on offense.
Thats the way we have to be, to be honest with you, Matta said. As you look across the board in college basketball and as you get into conference play, the Big Ten defensively is as good as there is in the country. Just having different guys out there that can knock shots down is something that is going to be advantageous.
In an easy romp past the 49ers (3-6), the Buckeyes (6-1) had other weapons.
LaQuinton Ross had 16 points in a reserve role, Lenzelle Smith Jr. added 14, and Sam Thompson had 13 as Ohio State built a 42-point lead before experimenting with different lineup combinations.
First, we need Deshaun to score, but (its good) having other guys out there who can put the ball in the basket, said Matta, in his 10th year at Ohio State. The best teams that Ive ever coached had multiple scorers. The 07 team is probably the best Ive had here, and Greg (Oden) led us in scoring at 15 points a game, and you just never knew night to night who was going to lead you in scoring. Im fine with that.
No. 3 MICHIGAN 80, ARKANSAS 67: In Ann Arbor, Mich., Jordan Morgan scored a season-high 12 points and matched a season high with 10 rebounds to lead the Wolverines (9-0).
Michigan led by 13 in the first half, but the game got close after halftime.
The Razorbacks (4-4) opened the second half with an 11-2 run to pull within two points and trailed 56-55 with 8:58 left. The Wolverines went on a 10-2 run and coasted to the win, John Beileins 100th in six seasons at the school.
No. 19 MICHIGAN STATE 73, LOYOLA OF CHICAGO 61: In East Lansing, Mich., Gary Harris scored 20 points and the Spartans (8-2) broke away in the second half.
Adreian Payne added 14 points and 10 rebounds for Michigan State.
Down 32-30 at the break, the Spartans went on a 22-9 run to take control. Harris hit three three-pointers during the burst.
PENN STATE 78, ARMY 70: At State College, Pa., D.J. Newbill scored 19 points and Jermaine Marshall added 16 as the Nittany Lions survived a second-half surge.
Penn State (5-4) led by as much as 15 in the first half and carried a 12-point lead into the break, only to see its lead cut to two with 12 minutes remaining in the game. Army (4-4) went cold from there, however, going more than seven minutes without a basket.
MARQUETTE 60, WISCONSIN 50: In Milwaukee, Junior Cadougan scored 13 of his 18 points in the final 10 minutes and Vander Blue added 17 points to lead the Golden Eagles.
No Wisconsin player scored in double digits with Jared Berggren and Ryan Evans each scoring nine points.
BUTLER 74, NORTHWESTERN 65: In Evanston, Ill., Andrew Smith scored a season-high 24 points and the Bulldogs (7-2) pulled away in the second half.
Smith had 19 points in the second half – including nine straight – and added 10 rebounds for the Butler, which shot 48 percent en route to its fourth straight win overall and fourth straight against the Wildcats (7-3).
Dave Sobolowski scored 21 points for Northwestern.