Miami falls on the Road to Ohio State

By: Jack Mueller

The Miami RedHawks had no answers for an Ohio State team on the verge of the top 25, as the Buckeyes defended their home floor in front of 9,000 fans, defeating the RedHawks 84-64. 

The RedHawks went into the game shorthanded, as guards Mekhi Cooper and Bradley Dean were both unavailable for Wednesday's game. While it may not have changed the outcome of the game, it would have given Miami an offensive boost they desperately needed at times. Darweshi Hunter and Ryan Mabrey did their best to carry the scoring load, putting up 15 and 13 respectively, but the lack of a third true scoring option stepping up prevented Miami from keeping pace with Ohio State. 

Miami’s offense showed that they can get buckets in bunches, as they were incredibly efficient shooting the ball against the Buckeyes (45% FG, 58% 3pt). Mabrey and Hunter hit nylon from behind the arc three times, and Eian Elmer continued his streak of stepping out behind the arc, hitting a triple for his third consecutive game. The killer flaw for the RedHawks was once again turnovers, as the Buckeyes added 25 points off of 17 turnovers. Ohio State also showed their size advantage in the paint, pulling down 18 offensive boards which led to another 25 second chance points. 

Center Jaquel Morris had his best game in a Miami jersey under the brightest spotlight. The sophomore was often tasked with guarding Ohio State star Zed Key and held his own, putting up his first career double-double. Key had a solid game of his own, but Morris’ performance prevented the Buckeyes from getting too comfortable on the inside. 

Big Man Matchup 12/7

OSU - Zed Key (Sr. F) 

Miami - Jaquel Morris (So. C) 











Fellow big man, 7’1” Center Reece Potter, made his return to the court in Columbus, coming off the bench for his first action since the season opener versus Evansville. Head Coach Travis Steele had high expectations for Potter, and his efforts in this contest showed why. Immediately after coming off of the bench, Potter showed his size, causing an Ohio State miss in the paint. Later on, early in the second half, he picked up the ball near the free throw line and played a smooth pass down the lane for an easy look for fellow freshman Evan Ipsaro. 

Ipsaro did his best to lead the RedHawks from the point guard spot, but struggled to make a similar impact on the game than he has in other games this season. The freshman guard was far from bad, putting up eight points and five boards while matched up against several stellar guards. The one knock on his performance was his turnovers (3), which can be passed off as an isolated incident. Wednesday’s game was Ipsaro’s first multi-turnover game since his first collegiate appearance against Evansville, 

The Buckeyes will be a team to keep an eye on for the rest of the season, as the mix of youth and experience, combined with immense talent all over the floor, makes them a dangerous group in a loaded Big Ten. Sophomore guards Roddy Gayle Jr. and Bruce Thornton played well beyond their years, combining for 29 points and five assists with just one turnover between the pair. Graduate Transfer Jamison Battle and senior Zed Key held down the interior on defense and also pulled down nine offensive boards. 

Miami now has the rest of the week to recover and refocus before hitting the road again to play another tough non-conference opponent. Davidson will play host to the RedHawks this weekend as Travis Steele’s men will try to pick up another impressive road victory. 

NEXT GAME: Miami @ Davidson // Saturday, December 9th, 2 p.m. // ESPN+

Twitter: jack_mueller15

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