Jan. 3, 2010
Site: Columbus, Ohio (Schottenstein Center)
Score: #6 Ohio State 59, Michigan 56
Records: U-M (9-5, 1-3 Big Ten), OSU (16-1, 4-0 Big Ten)
Next U-M Event: Thursday, Jan. 7 -- vs. Iowa (Crisler Arena), 7 p.m.
COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Junior guard Veronica Hicks (Chicago, Ill/Thornwood) hit a three-pointer with the shot clock expiring to bring the University of Michigan women's basketball team within one point of the No. 6 Ohio State Buckeyes, 57-56, but a bucket from OSU guard Samantha Prahalis with 10 seconds remaining helped seal a 59-56 win over U-M on Sunday afternoon (Jan. 3) at the Schottenstein Center.
Freshman guard Dayeesha Hollins (Cincinnati, Ohio/Winton Woods) led the Wolverines offense with 19 points, including 11 in the second half. Sophomore Carmen Reynolds (Hilliard, Ohio/Davidson) and freshman Jenny Ryan (Saginaw, Mich./Nouvel Catholic Central) each added 12 points. Senior center Krista Phillips (Saskatoon, Saskatchewan/Aden Bowman Collegiate) added a team-best eight rebounds and four blocks.
Michigan outshot the host Buckeyes, shooting 49 percent from the field (26-of-53) and had seven blocks, while holding the Buckeyes to zero blocks on the afternoon. Additionally, Michigan had 26 points in the paint. This was the closest game the Wolverines and Buckeyes played since a 51-49 loss at Crisler during the 2003-04 season.
Trailing 34-32 at halftime, Michigan came out and with a familiar first bucket from Reynolds tied the game at 34-all with less than 10 seconds off the game clock. It was quite the up-and-down affair with both teams pushing the tempo and with neither team gaining a lead of more than four points through the entire second half. Hollins put the U-M offense on her back in the second stanza with nine of Michigan's first 13 second-half points. Hollins showcased her offensive skills, including several open court drives and a nifty up-and-under moves that kept the Wolverines right in the thick of things.
Michigan got right down to business and opened the game with a quick 8-0 runm thanks to six early points from Hollins. Jantel Lavender scored Ohio State's first points at the 18:05 mark of the first half and several quick Ohio State steals cut the U-M lead to just two points at the 16:23 mark.
Michigan kept pace with the Buckeyes and held a 16-11 lead with some hot shooting from the floor through the early going, shooting .583 through the first 10 minutes of the half. The Buckeyes would not go away and with a 7-4 run, took their first lead of the game midway through the half. The Wolverines were ready for the Ohio State run and were able to counter with a basket from Ryan who had a game-best 10 points in the first half. Michigan's defense was the key to their offense in the first half with several big plays, especially late in the shot clock. Michigan ran its lead to seven points at 28-21 before an 8-2 Ohio State run tied the game at 30-30.
The Wolverines also forced nine first-half turnovers and held Ohio State to merely 36.4 percent from the floor on 12-of-33 shooting, a number that was helped greatly in the final five minutes as the Buckeyes made their last five shots to take a 34-32 halftime lead in a game where the Wolverines led virtually the entire half. The U-M defense was able to hold two-time Big Ten Player of the Year Lavender to four points on 2-of-7 shooting in the first half.
The Wolverines return to Crisler Arena on Thursday (Jan. 7) when they take on Iowa in a midweek Big Ten matchup. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m. Fans can follow the action live at www.BigTenNetwork.com.
Contact: Jessica Poole (734) 763-4423