for this game

Mitchell leads No. 7 Ohio State to 97-93 win over Michigan

Jan 22, 2016 - 1:59 AM ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) Shayla Cooper and her Ohio State teammates remember the loss in Michigan last season.

The seventh-ranked Buckeyes wouldn't let it happen again, beating their rival 97-93 on Thursday night.

''This is a tough place to play, and we know that, because they beat us here last year,'' said Shayla Cooper, who finished with 23 points and 13 rebounds. ''This was a tough game because they've got such a great offense, so we had to work hard to hold them off.''

Kelsey Mitchell led Ohio State with 27 points, but it was Cooper who finished the game off with 10 points in the fourth quarter.

''They stretched us out with a really small lineup in the fourth quarter, and Cooper starting diving to the basket,'' said Michigan coach Kim Barnes Arico. ''We picked it up once, but we didn't really adjust to it and it really hurt us.''

The Buckeyes (13-5, 6-1 Big Ten) got 15 points each from Ameryst Alson and Asia Doss.

''I thought we played really well on offense, but our defense left some things to be desired,'' said Buckeyes coach Kevin McGuff. ''We just wanted to stay focused on offense, even when we weren't getting stops.''

Katelynn Flaherty led Michigan (11-7, 3-4) with 22 points, the 12th straight game where she had scored at least 19. Hallie Thome added 21 points and 12 rebounds, while Michigan's Kelsey Mitchell scored 14, including 12 in the first half.

''Katelynn and Hallie work so well together that we specifically tried to set up plays for them in the second half,'' Barnes Arico said. ''That got us going, but Ohio State always had an answer. That's why they are a top-10 team.''

Ohio State threatened to blow the game open early, leading 31-17 after one quarter, but Michigan's Kelsey Mitchell led a second-quarter rally that had the Wolverines back within 49-42 at the half. Both Mitchells led their team in scoring in the half - Ohio State's with 20 and Michigan's with 12.

''I was able to get a lot of good shots in the first half, but they stayed closer to me in the second half,'' said Ohio State's version of Kelsey Mitchell. ''That meant one of my teammates had to be open, and it was usually Shayla.''

Flaherty's five points in the first four minutes of the third quarter had Michigan within 58-53, but they couldn't string together another stops to get back within one possession.

Doss and Cooper helped the Buckeyes move the lead back to 12, and it was 74-62 going into the fourth.

The Wolverines were within 89-84 with 90 seconds to play, and Ohio State's Mitchell missed as the shot clock expired, but Doss grabbed a key offensive rebound. Ameryst Alson split a pair of free throws and Siera Thompson hit two for Michigan to make it a four-point game with 33 seconds to go.

Michigan got as close as 93-90 when Alson missed a pair of free throws, but Cooper clinched the game with four straight from the line.

''That's my favorite shot in basketball,'' Cooper said. ''You are all by yourself and uncontested.''


Ohio State: The Buckeyes extended their school record to 11 straight games with 80 or more points. Ohio State came into the game leading the Big Ten in scoring at 86.4 points and are No. 3 in the country.

Michigan: Thompson's 13 points leave the junior 10 away from becoming the 25th player in school history to score 1,000 in a career.


Thursday was the first and last matchup of Kelsey Mitchell and Kelsey Mitchell unless the teams play in the postseason. Ohio State's Mitchell is a sophomore, but her Wolverine namesake missed both games against the Buckeyes last year. The teams are only scheduled to play once this season - the last one for Michigan's Mitchell.

''I've never met her, but people always used to get us mixed up when we were in high school,'' said Ohio State's Mitchell - a 5-foot-8 guard compared to Michigan's six-foot forward. ''Luckily, it never got too bad because we were a couple years apart in age.''


Ohio State: Visits Rutgers on Sunday.

Michigan: Hosts Nebraska on Sunday.