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Sullinger, No. 3 Ohio State race past Valpo

Nov 26, 2011 - 3:11 AM Columbus, OH (Sports Network) - Jared Sullinger recorded his fourth straight double-double with 14 points and 13 rebounds to go with five assists and four steals, as No. 3 Ohio State pulled away for an 80-47 victory over Valparaiso on Friday.

William Buford poured in 25 points and pulled down five rebounds, while Aaron Craft added 15 points, eight assists and four steals for the Buckeyes (6-0), who won by at least 33 points for the fourth straight game.

"My teammates set me up well," Buford said. "They were setting great screens and got me the ball. I was fortunate enough to knock shots down."

Deshaun Thomas chipped in with 12 points for Ohio State.

Jay Harris paced Valparaiso (5-2) with 18 points, while Ryan Broekhoff scored seven and grabbed 11 boards. Hrvoje Vucic added seven points and Will Bogan contributed six points for the Crusaders, who had a five-game winning streak snapped.

The game remained close through the first 12 1/2 minutes of the first half as Ohio State held a 21-19 edge.

The Buckeyes then reeled off nine straight points to take a 30-19 lead with just over five minutes left before the break.

But Valpo closed the half on a 10-3 run to trail by only four, 33-29, heading into the locker room.

In the second half, it was all Buckeyes, who opened the period with a 19-2 run through the first six-plus minutes to take a commanding 52-31 advantage.

The Buckeyes continued to make shots the rest of the way, shooting 68 percent from the floor and 5-of-9 from three-point range en route to outscoring the Crusaders 47-18 in the second half.

Ohio State out-rebounded Valpo 36-34 and took much better care of the basketball, netting 24 points off 18 Crusader turnovers, while the Buckeyes only committed six turnovers leading to zero points.

"They came out hard, but the pressure wasn't overwhelming; we came out rushing things," Valparaiso head coach Bryce Drew said. "Maybe if we made some of the layups in the second half, we could have stayed in the game. That initial quick run in the second half really kept us from mounting a comeback."

Game Notes

It was the 28th consecutive victory at home for Ohio State, dating back to a 66-55 win over Michigan February 27, 2010. It also tied the 2006-07 Buckeyes for the third-longest streak in program history...The Buckeyes improved to 55-11 all-time versus members of the Horizon League...Before scoring just 47 points, Valpo's previous season-low was 62...It was Sullinger's 40th career double-double. He also established a new career-high in steals.