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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Ohio State got off to a slow start and was never able to recover as No. 3-seed Michigan State won the rubber match this season with an 82-63 victory in the Big Ten Tournament semifinals Saturday night.
Kelsey Mitchell led the Buckeyes with 20 points but fellow All-Big Ten first-teamer Aerial Powers was on point most of the night and finished with a game-high 31 points and 12 rebounds for the Spartans.
With the status of three-time All-Big Ten first team honoree Ameryst Alston in question coming into the game with a wrist injury, the Buckeye offense struggled to get in gear. OSU scored a season-low 20 points in the opening half and trailed 44-20 at the break.
The lead grew to 72-36 after a stagnant third quarter by both teams. In the fourth, the Buckeyes clawed back a little behind 14 points from Shayla Cooper but would fall in the end 82-63.
For Michigan State, in addition to Powers’ big night, Tori Jankoska scored 23 points, grabbed eight rebounds and dished-out six assists.
The Buckeyes will now have to wait until Selection Monday, on March 14 to find out their NCAA Tournament fate. In the NCAA Selection Committee’s three Reveal 10s last month, Ohio State was projected as a top-10 seed. The top-16 seeds in the tournament will host in the first and second rounds of the tournament.