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2019-2020 High School Bounce

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September 2020
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Ohio State women’s team gets second round “monkey off their backs”; out-physical Ga. Tech

Samantha Prahalis (courtesy of OSU athletics)

Don’t ask head coach Jim Foster if he likes St. John Arena. He told a reporter on Sunday, ” St. John Arena is not our home court. Your home court is where you play every day and practice every day. We just happen to have a very large auxilary gym.”

If you ask me and the rest of the media that cover the women’s basketball team, they should play a few games each season there because they have a tremendous advantage that they don’t have at the cavenous Value City Arena, an abundance of loudness. There were 3,881 fans in attendance at St. John and it sounded like there were 13,000. At Value City Arena, you can hear every insult and name that the fans yell at the referees. The venerable arena has an intimate setting.

Monday night, the Buckeyes beat a scrappy, quick and young Georgia Tech team, 67-60. The Buckeyes were insulted that Georgia Tech started trash-talking before the game ever started.

The Yellow Jackets with only two seniors, showed they are a good team against Bowling Green, using a suffocating press which caused the Falcons to turn the ball over 25 times.

Georgia Tech, coached by former Purdue star MaChelle Joseph, who has played several games in St. John Arena, received an at-large bid to their seventh NCAA Tournament after finishing 4th in the tough Atlantic Coast Conference. They beat four Top 25 teams but at 24-10, did not finish as an elite team in the country.

They were going for their first appearance in the Sweet 16, but it was not to be; but they tried very hard to beat Ohio State.

MaChelle Joseph as a Boilermaker (courtesy of Purdue athletics)

MaChelle Joseph Ga. Tech coach (courtesy of Georgia Tech athletics)

The Buckeyes were trying to get rid of the “monkey off their backs”, losing in the second round of the NCAA tourney, 6 of the past 8 trips.

OSU was determined not to let that happen. They got off to a good start in the game, 12-6, 25-18 and let 27-20. But then the physical and quick Yellow Jackets closed the first half with a 10-2 run led by freshman guard Tyaunna Marshall who led the way with 10 points to put Tech up 30-29 at the half.

The Yellow Jackets had to feel good about themselves as they held Samantha Prahlis to 6 points and Jantel Lavender with 4.

The first half had its drama and rough play. Deja Foster tried her best to rough up Prahalis while playing defense and offense, knocking her to the floor a couple of times before the referees called a foul.

Then there was a battle underneath the basket for a loose ball between Lavender and Chelsea Regins. The refs called a technical foul on each player after a 5-minute consultation reviewing the replays on the television monitors at the scorer’s table. Lavender was so upset, that Prahalis calmed her down knowing that an ejection would’ve hurt the Buckeyes in a key game.

As far as Lavender goes, at 6’4, the Yellow Jackets have never faced anybody on their schedule as good as Lavender in the post. The best they could do was put the shorter (6’2) Regins who is very quick on her.

Briefly to start the second half, Georgia Tech opened up a 33-29 lead on a 3-point goal by senior Metra Walthour on their first possession.

In the second half, the Buckeyes were able to get Lavender open and she was unstoppable ending the game with 21 points. Prahalis scored 16 and Tayler Hill added 11.

The Buckeyes were the ones who played great defense, limiting Georgia Tech to only two free throws for the game and 38% shooting from the floor.

The OSU women shot the ball well all night, 55% first half, 63.6% second half and 59.5% for the game.

Georgia Tech won the battle of the boards, outrebounding the taller Buckeyes, 34-31, 18-5 on the offensive boards which resulted in a 16-5 advantage on second-chance points. The Yellow Jackets also won the bench battle, 14-0.

Lavender who set a record this year as the only basketball player, man or woman to win four Big 10 Conference Player of the Year Awards, set another record during the game. She scored in an NCAA record 135th game in double figures, breaking the old record set by Oklahoma’s Courtney Paris who scored in 134.

The fourth-seeded Buckeyes (24-9) now move into the Sweet 16 round of the tourney. They’ll play in the Dayton regional semifinal on Saturday against top-seeded Tennessee at the University of Dayton Arena.


46 612 MaChelle Joseph Ga. Tech coach (overall on the game)

46 613 Alex Montgomery Ga. Tech Did OSU playing on own campus a key

46 614 Sasha Goodlett Ga. Tech On OSU playing at St. John Arena

46 615 Sasha Goodlett Ga. Tech Did they feel good up 30-29 at halftime

46 618 MaChelle Joseph Ga. Tech coach Lavender only 4 pts in 1st half unstoppable is 2nd half

46 619 MaChelle Joseph Ga. Tech Her team got 30 more shots & turned OSU over 21 times but no win


46 620 Jantel Lavender OSU Wanted to get past the 2nd round to the Sweet 16

46 621 Jantel Lavender OSU Down 33-29 team just took off what adjustments made

46 622 Samantha Prahalis OSU Team looked confident vs Ga. Tech, Tennessee is next up

46 623 Samantha Prahalis OSU A very physical game that OSU had to fight through

46 629 Jantel Lavender OSU What she knows about Tennessee or play against them in AAU ball

46 634 Jim Foster OSU coach OSU seems better when they get spacing on floor

46 635 Jim Foster OSU coach In 2nd half held Ga. Tech scoreless for 6 minutes

46 636 Jim Foster OSU coach In 2nd Half Jantel Lavender so open why

46 638 Jim Foster OSU coach Ga. Tech press didn’t stop Samantha Prahalis

46 641 Jim Foster OSU coach On playing Tennessee next in Dayton Ohio

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