#5/5 Ohio State at #20/21 Michigan State
Date: February 27, 2016 | Time: 2:00 p.m. | Venue: Breslin Center | Location: East Lansing, Mich.
Radio: 1460 AM
Setting The Scene
- Ohio State opened Big Ten play with a win over Michigan State and will now look to close Big Ten play in the same manner on Saturday.
- Tip-off is set for 2:00 p.m. ET from the Breslin Center.
- A win on Saturday for the Buckeyes would clinch a share of the Big Ten regular season title. OSU had its 11-game win streak snapped last Thursday in an overtime loss at Minnesota.
- After a couple of uncharacteristic losses, Michigan State looks to be back on track having won three-straight. The Spartans enter Saturday one game ahead of Indiana and Minnesota for third in the Big Ten.
- The game will be televised on the Big Ten Network. Lisa Byington and Stephanie White will have the call.
- The game can also be heard on ESPN 1460 AM in the Columbus area and on www.OhioStateBuckeyes.com.
Noting The Buckeyes
- The Buckeyes are 15-2 in Big Ten play and are one win away from clinching a share of the Big Ten regular season title.
- This would be the Buckeyes' 14th Big Ten regular season championship and the first since 2009-10.
- OSU leads the conference and is second in the country in scoring at 87.4 ppg.
- The 87.4 ppg puts the Buckeyes on pace to break the school’s single-season scoring record of 83.2 ppg which was set by the program’s only Final Four team of 1992-93.
- Ohio State is fourth in the country in shooting percentage at 48.5.
- The Buckeyes finished the regular season with a 14-1 record at home, winning its last 14-straight games.
- Alexa Hart is second in the country in shooting percentage at 65.5 percent.
- Since the start of conference play, Hart leads the conference in shooting percentage at 68.0.
- Senior Ameryst Alston and sophomore Kelsey Mitchell were each named to the Late-season Wooden Top 20 as well as Naismith Award Semifinalists.
- Mitchell was also named to the Ann Meyers Drysdale Midseason watch list and the Nancy Lieberman Award Top 10.
- Mitchell is fifth in the country at 24.5 ppg and Alston is 37th at 19.5 ppg. They combine for 44.0 ppg which is the 2nd-highest total in the country.
- Alston is fourth in school-history with 2,107 career points. She is just the sixth Buckeye to reach the 2,000 point milestone.
- When Mitchell and Alston each score 20 points in a game, the Buckeyes are 22-4, including 12-2 this season.
- In just over a season and a half, Mitchell is already 14th on OSU’s career scoring chart at 1,559 points.
- Shayla Cooper has a team-high 9 double-doubles this year and has made 13 of her last 20 three-point attempts.
- The Buckeyes have scored over 90 points 13 times this season and are 13-0 in those games.
Michigan State Snapshot
- The Spartans enter the final game of the regular season on a three-game win streak and have a record 21-7 overall and 12-5 in the conference.
- MSU had lost three of four prior to its most recent streak.
- Aerial Powers is averaging 31 points per game over the three-game win streak and tops the team on the year at 21.8 ppg. She also leads the team in rebounding at nearly nine boards per game.
- Tori Jankoska has made 56 three-point field goals on the season and is averaging 15.3 ppg. She has dished-out a team-high 108 assists and leads the Big Ten in free throw shooting at nearly 90 percent.
- The Spartans are one of the better rebounding teams in the conference as they are second with a +11.8 margin.
- MSU is also holding its opponents to just 38.6 percent shooting while the Buckeyes enter the game second in the conference and fourth in the country at 48.5 percent from the floor.
Series History vs. Michigan State
- Saturday’s game will be the 79th meeting all-time between Michigan State and Ohio State.
- The Buckeyes lead the all-time series with the Spartans 53-25.
- Ohio State dominated the series early but since the 2007 season, the teams have been relatively even with OSU holding a slight 9-6 advantage.
- The Buckeyes have a 22-11 edge in games played in Columbus and a 20-11 lead in games in East Lansing.
- The teams played three times in 2011 with the Buckeyes winning all three games over ranked MSU teams.
- After the Spartans swept the season series in 2013-14, the Buckeyes have won the last two meetings, including the first game between the teams this season.
McGuff vs. Michigan State
- Head coach Kevin McGuff is 3-3 lifetime against the Spartans.
- He split a home-and-home series with Michigan State in 2008 and 2009 when he coached at Xavier. Each team held serve on its home floor.
- He dropped both meetings with the Spartans in his first go around with the Buckeyes but has since won the last two meetings.
Last Time vs. Michigan State
- The Buckeyes got out of the gate well and took as much as an 11-point lead in the second quarter against Michigan State. But the Spartans came back and behind a 22-14 effort in the 3rd quarter, the visitors led for most of the 4th quarter.
- The Buckeyes took the lead with an Asia Doss put-back with 36 seconds left and four Kelsey Mitchell free throws salted the game away.
- The Spartans committed 30 fouls in the game and the Buckeyes were able to make 27 of 34 attempts from the line.
- Another big stat was three-point shooting. The Spartans were 8-of-19 from behind the arc while the Buckeyes were a season-low 2-of-20.
- This was the eighth time this season in which Ameryst Alston and Kelsey Mitchell each scored 20 or more points in the same game. The Buckeyes are now 7-1 when that happens.
- This was Alston’s fourth-straight game of 20 or more points and her eighth of the season.
- Mitchell reached the 20-point mark for the 10th time this year.
- Mitchell was 13-of-13 from the free throw line which was the fourth game of her career with at least 13 makes from the free throw line.
- Asia Doss scored in double-figures for the third time in the last four games, finishing with 10 points.
- Shayla Cooper notched her third double-double of the year and the 10th of her career with 17 points and 10 rebounds.