COLUMBUS, Ohio – Clutch shooting in the fourth quarter lifted Ohio State to a 78-73 victory Wednesday night over visiting Penn State and gave the Buckeyes a season sweep of the Lady Lions.
Ohio State (10-11, 6-6) shot 57 percent from the floor and made 18-of-22 free throws in the fourth quarter. That production from the line was enough to put the Buckeyes over the hump in a game that featured nine ties and 12 lead changes.
Carly Santoro led four Buckeyes in double-figures with 20 points. She was 11-of-13 from the line including a perfect 8-of-8 in the final quarter.
Makayla Waterman bested her career-high for the second time in the last three games as she poured in 19 points. She was 10-of-14 from the charity stripe, all in the fourth quarter. Waterman also grabbed seven boards, had three blocks and a pair of steals.
Freshman Dorka Juhász notched her seventh double-double of the season with 14 points and a game-high 11 rebounds. She also dished-out a season-high three assists.
Point guard Carmen Grande was the fourth Buckeye in double-figures as she posted 14 points to go along with four rebounds, four assists and two steals. She made a big three-pointer to tie the game with just over three minutes to play and her lay-in with 21 seconds left put the Buckeyes in front for good. Grande also reached a career milestone on Wednesday as she recorded the 800th assist of her career.
Janai Crooms chipped-in with nine points and seven rebounds. This was her ninth game in the last 10 with at least nine points.
Neither team led by more than six points in the opening half. OSU went on a 14-4 run midway through the third quarter to build a brief 49-39 lead. The Lady Lions answered with a 12-2 run of their own to close the quarter and the teams were deadlocked at 51-51 headed to the fourth.
The Buckeyes led by four points at the midway point of the fourth quarter and then PSU went on a 7-1 run to take a 66-63 lead with 3:30 to play. Ohio State once again pushed the lead to four just two minutes later but a three from the wing and a jumper in the paint put PSU back in front 73-72 with 30 seconds remaining. That’s when Grande drove the lane and scored and then Santoro made all four of her free throws in the final 14 seconds to seal the win.
The Buckeyes will host No. 16 Iowa in its annual Pink Game on Sunday. Tip-off is set for 4 p.m. on BTN. The Hawkeyes are currently in third place in the league at 8-3 and will host Michigan State on Thursday evening before traveling to Columbus.