Lavender leads No. 3 Ohio State over Bowling GreenNov 15, 2009 - 10:33 PM COLUMBUS, Ohio(AP) -- Getting physical wasn't all Ohio State's idea.
Jantel Lavender had 23 points and 14 rebounds to lead the third-ranked Buckeyes to a 91-72 victory over Bowling Green on Sunday in the quarterfinals of the Preseason WNIT.
It was the 39th career double-double for Lavender, an AP preseason All-America.
"They set the tone in how physical the game was," Lavender said. "We can be physical, too. If they throw elbows we can get physical back."
Tayler Hill added 19 points for Ohio State (2-0), while Samantha Prahalis had 14 points and eight assists. Sarah Schulze had nine of her 15 points in the second half when Ohio State led by as many as 32 points.
Tracy Pontius had 18 points and Lauren Prochaska added 11 for Bowling Green (1-1).
Ohio State led 55-28 at halftime as Lavender had 18 points on 7-of-11 shooting from the field.
"They tried to take away our inside game so we made 3-point shots to loosen it up," Ohio State coach Jim Foster said.
A key moment came with 4:29 left in the first half when Bowling Green's Maggie Hennegan fouled Schulze. A technical foul was also given to the Falcons' bench. Maria Moeller made the two free throws for the technical and Schulze hit two foul shots to give the Buckeyes a 40-20 lead.
Hill followed with a free throw a minute later before Bowling Green broke its scoreless drought on a 3 by Pontius to make it 41-23.
Hill, a freshman guard, had six assists and six rebounds.
"I'm surrounded by great players and great coaches," she said.
The Buckeyes finished the half with a 14-3 run with all the points coming from Hill (5), Prahalis (5) and Lavender (4).
"We had trouble adjusting to the physicality of the game and we dug ourselves an early hole that we couldn't get out of," Falcons coach Curt Miller said.
Bowling Green pulled within 27-20 on Jen Uhl's three-point play with 7:21 left in the first half, but Ohio State went on an 18-0 run over the next 4 1/2 minutes.
"The last time we lost in this building we went to the NCAA tournament so I told them maybe this is the start of a big season and we can get to the NCAA tournament again," Miller said, referring to an 89-41 loss on Nov. 12, 2004 in Value City Arena.
"One of the reasons we were excited to play in the WNIT was the opportunity to play a great program like Ohio State," Miller said. "We looked forward to this day to play against a program that truly has a chance to win the national championship this year."
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