Not even a slow start could stop the #1 Ohio State Buckeyes from blowing out #8 George Mason 98-66 in front of essentially a home-crowd in the 3rd Round of the NCAA Tournament.
As Gus Johnson so eloquently exclaimed “Home Cookin,” because Cleveland native David Lighty was brilliant with a game-high 25 points on a perfect 7-of-7 shooting from behind the arc.
Lighty wasn’t the only one stroking from deep as the Buckeyes broke an OSU NCAA Tournament record with 16 made three-pointers en route to their most lopsided tournament win in school history.
By: Nick Grays
George Mason could have really used Jai Lewis, their star forward from the 2006 Cinderella Team, because this Patriots team had no answer inside for the always dominant freshman Jared Sullinger.
Sullinger put in a quiet 18 points and grabbed nine rebounds, including five offensive boards. The phenom also didn’t shy away from letting everyone know that he thinks other teams are taking note of the impressive Buckeyes.
“I’m pretty sure they are. I mean, it’s kind of hard to guard this basketball team with so many weapons we have. I don’t know what you do to take notes on how to guard us with so many weapons. So that’s on them,” said Sullinger.
Just when you think you’ve pin-pointed the key players behind the Buckeyes success, another player emerges with a ridiculous stat-line. This time it was freshman point guard and Big Ten Sixth Man of the Year Aaron Craft who dished out a career-high 15 assists.
Those 15 assists were compared to only two turnovers which results in a assist-to-turnover ratio (7.5) that the Wisconsin Badgers Jordan Taylor can’t even touch. The young fella Craft prospects to have a very bright future at Ohio State.
“It didn’t really change how the other games have gone for me coming into the game when I do. Anytime I get in, I try to give us any lift I can, whether it’s playing defense or finding the open guy,” said Craft. “I think our run was more predicated on Dave. He started knocking down shots for us and we started playing, getting back to our game plan. So it wasn’t any different than any other game; I was just excited to get in and play my role.”
Next up, the Buckeyes travel to Newark, New Jersey to take on the #4-seeded Kentucky Wildcats in the Sweet 16. Ohio State arguably hasn’t seen a squad as athletically talented as the Wildcats, but at the same time, has Kentucky seen a team like the Buckeyes?
What did you think of the Buckeyes rather dominant performance versus George Mason? Let me know by commenting below!
Nick Grays is a senior editor at The Sports Bank where he covers the Wisconsin Badgers, Green Bay Packers, Indiana Pacers and Milwaukee Brewers. Follow him on Twitter by clicking here or visit his blog Nick Knows Best.
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