Ohio State Buckeyes at Northwestern Wildcats Free Preview 01/17/18

Ohio State coach Chris Holtmann is the first Big Ten coach in 85 years to win his first seven conference games

Ohio State coach Chris Holtmann is the first Big Ten coach in 85 years to win his first seven conference games

Bates-Diop entered the game as the Big Ten's leading scorer at 20.3 points per game, but he shot just 4 of 12 from the field. Meanwell did it while prowling the sidelines in 1912. The Gophers really put themselves in a hole early in the second half, hitting just three shots in the opening 10 minutes of the period. Additionally, it's the Buckeyes 16th victory of the season and sixth consecutive. They'll need quite a run for the rest of the Big Ten season if they hope to make it back to the NCAA Tournament once again.

Both teams were 1-for-3 on the power play.

"Obviously I'm disappointed in the result of the game, but I was actually very proud of my team tonight", Northwestern coach Chris Collins said.

"It is what it is. I got other problems I've got to figure out along the way". Problems like not having much time to practice with three games in a span of six days.

On the season, Ohio State basketball averages 79.4 points, 37.1 rebounds and 15.5 assists per game. Problems like being next to last in scoring defense. But finding consistency from someone else has been elusive. It what looked like a rebuilding campaign under a first year head coach, the Buckeyes find themselves atop the Big Ten with an undefeated record.

MI beat Ohio State on Tuesday, 84-75. Northwestern made a run after that, getting the lead all the way down to four on a Scottie Lindsey (13 points) bucket with 45 seconds left. Keita Bates-Diop has been one of the top players in the conference this year, averaging 19.8 points and 8.8 rebounds per game.

Although the Wolverines lost out on Friday, they have signed three defensive linemen to the 2018 class: Four-star Aidan Hutchinson of Dearborn Divine Child, three-star Taylor Upshaw of Bradenton, Fla., and Julius Welschof, from Germany. After scoring 10 consecutive points, MI led 43-41.

Although Ohio State was defeated, Stephanie Mavunga fought to keep her team in the game with 21 points, shooting 70% from the field (making 7 of 10 attempts). 1 Michigan State, Maryland and Rutgers, Ohio State led Northwestern by as many as 15 in the second half before holding off a late Wildcats charge.

"We didn't always play our best, but this is one we'll feel good about", Holtmann said. But even when the team generated open shots, it failed to knock them down, a recurring theme this season.

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