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Women’s Basketball: No. 2 Ohio State drops second straight 78-65 at No. 6 Indiana

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The No. 2 Ohio State women’s basketball team returned to action for the first time since their first loss of the season to No. 10 Iowa on Monday. Credit: Katie Good | Asst. Photo Editor

Senior guard Taylor Mikesell wasted no time scoring her 2,000th-career point Thursday, but it wasn’t enough to push the No. 2 Buckeyes past No. 6 Indiana after a third-quarter surge led to a 78-65 Hoosiers victory at Assembly Hall.

The Buckeyes (19-2, 8-2 Big Ten) dropped their second-straight game of the season — after getting off to the best start in program history with 19-straight wins — as their shooting woes continued Thursday. A 27-6 third quarter explosion by Indiana (19-1, 9-1 Big Ten) led to the Hoosiers defending their perfect 6-0 record against the Associated Press Top 25 teams this season.

After halftime, Indiana’s 3-point shooting woes went away, as the Hoosiers made 4-of-9 triples in the third quarter after going 1-for-8 in the first half.

Indiana junior guard Chloe Moore-McNeil gave Indiana its first lead of the second half after starting 0-of-7 from the floor, as the Hoosiers went on an 8-0 run. Hoosiers junior guard Sydney Parrish scored her first bucket of the night, a 3-point shot with 5:14 left in the quarter.

A 17-0 Hoosiers run was interrupted by freshman forward Cotie McMahon’s finish at the rim, but two-consecutive turnovers led to a 6-0 run and a 14-point deficit, 55-41.

The Hoosiers outscored Ohio State 27-6 in the third quarter.

The Buckeyes cut the lead to nine after a bucket from sophomore guard Taylor Thierry, but it wasn’t enough, as they forced only one Indiana turnover in the fourth quarter and four in the second half. Indiana senior forward Mackenzie Holmes, who recorded her fourth-straight game with 26-plus points, later fouled out.

It didn’t matter, as the Hoosiers pushed past the Buckeyes, going 12-0 at home in front of a sold-out crowd and beating their fourth top-10 opponent this season, a program record.

After the opening tipoff, the Buckeyes came out on a 7-0 run which was stopped after Holmes scored a bucket. Holmes, who entered the game leading Indiana with averages of 21.9 points and 8.3 rebounds per game, led all scorers with 11 points on 5-for-6 shooting in the first quarter.

The Buckeyes were active on defense early on, leading Indiana to play at a fast pace. The Hoosiers, who lead the Big Ten in the fewest turnovers per game, had four in the first quarter.

The Buckeyes went up by eight points with 3:57 left in the opening period, their largest lead of the game. Indiana would soon turn defense into offense as a steal led to a Holmes bucket, cutting the lead to one.

Indiana ended the first quarter on a 9-0 scoring run, as the Hoosiers led 17-16.

Ohio State’s shooting woes continued from 3-point land in the second quarter as the team went 1-of-4 from 3 and shot 14 percent to end the half.

McMahon led the charge for Ohio State, totaling 21 points and three blocks. The four-time Big Ten Freshman of the Week put on a scoring exhibition as she battled against Holmes, with both players taking on the offensive load for their respective teams.

Mikesell threaded the needle with a bounce pass to McMahon, putting the Buckeyes up 31-25 late in the second quarter. The Buckeyes went on a 15-5 scoring run with 1:30 remaining and led 33-27.

McMahon ended the quarter scoring 18 first-half points, following her 21 total points in the Buckeyes loss against Iowa Monday. The freshman capped off the half with a block on Moore-McNeil, as Holmes matched her with 18 points to end the half.

Both teams struggled from 3 in the first half, combining for 2-for-15 from downtown entering the break despite making six of their final eight field goals of the second quarter. However, Indiana created a gap with a 5-of-13 showing from deep in the final two frames, while the Buckeyes could only sink two beyond the arc in that stretch.

Ohio State shot 38 percent from the field and made one of its final 11 shot attempts. Thierry finished with 13 points and 12 rebounds, the first double-double of her career, while Mikesell totaled 15 points on 7-of-17 shooting.

Ohio State will look to get back in the win column as it takes on Purdue Sunday. Tipoff is set for 1 p.m. at the Schottenstein Center and BTN+ will broadcast.

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