PREVIEW: Ohio State vs. West Virginia -- NCAA Second Round
March 19, 2016


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#3 Ohio State vs #6 West Virginia

Date: March 20, 2016 | Time: 12:00 p.m. | Venue: St. John Arena | Location: Columbus, Ohio


Radio: 1460 AM

Online Coverage: Game Notes | Watch Live Live Stats | Twitter Updates |



Setting The Scene

  • Ohio State is seeking its first trip to the Sweet 16 since 2011 when it hosts West Virginia in the second round of the NCAA Tournament on Sunday.
  • Tip-off is set for 12:00 p.m. ET at St. John Arena.
  • Ohio State advanced to the second round after an 88-69 victory over Buffalo in the opening round on Friday.
  • West Virginia downed Princeton in the first round on Friday 74-65 to move into the second  round.
  • The winner will play the winner of the Arizona State and Tennessee game next Friday in Sioux Falls, S.D.
  • Sunday's game is televised on ESPN 2. Brenda VanLengen and Buckeye legend Katie Smith will have the call.
  • The game can also be heard on ESPN 1460 AM in the Columbus area and on

Buckeyes In The NCAA Tournament                          

  • Ohio State is making its 23rd NCAA Tournament appearance.
  • OSU has an overall record of 25-22 in the NCAA Tournament.
  • The Buckeyes have failed to get out of the first round just six times in their 23 appearances.
  • OSU has made the Sweet 16 seven times (1986, 1988, 1989, 1993, 2005, 2009, 2011).
  • The Buckeyes have been to the Elite 8 three times (1985, 1987, 1993).
  • The best tournament run for the Buckeyes was their runner-up finish in 1993.
  • This is just the fourth time the Buckeyes have earned a No. 3-seed and the first since 2009.
  • Ohio State went 1-1 as a 3-seed in both 1988 and 1989 and then advanced to the Sweet 16 as a 3-seed in 2009.
  • The Big Ten Conference teams have gone 17-3 in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament over the last four seasons.
  • Kelsey Mitchell is averaging 25 points and 5.3 assists in three NCAA Tournament games.
  • Ameryst Alston averaged 29 points, 6.0 assists and was 19-of-23 in her first two NCAA Tournament games last season.
  • Alexa Hart recorded double-doubles in each of her first two NCAA Tournament games last season and has now blocked 13 shots in her three NCAA games.

Noting The Buckeyes

  • Ohio State is third in the country in scoring at 86.7 ppg.
  • The 86.7 ppg puts the Buckeyes on pace to shatter 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.
  • The Buckeyes schedule was ranked the third-hardest in the NCAA this season.
  • Ohio State is sixth in the country in shooting percentage at 47.9.
  • The Buckeyes have won 15-straight home games this season since losing the opener to UConn.
  • Alexa Hart shot a conference-best 68.0 percent in Big Ten play.
  • 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 is a Nancy Lieberman Award Finalist.
  • Mitchell is fourth in the country at 25.8 ppg and Alston is 49th at 18.6 ppg.
  • Mitchell scored a Big Ten Tournament single-game record 43 points in the win over Rutgers in the quarterfinals.
  • Alston is fourth in school-history with 2,138 career points. She is just the sixth Buckeye to reach the 2,000 point milestone.
  • In just over a season and a half, Mitchell is already 11th on OSU's career scoring chart at 1,697 points.
  • When Mitchell and Alston each score 20 points in a game, the Buckeyes are 22-4, including 12-2 this season.
  • Shayla Cooper has a team-high 9 double-doubles this year.
  • The Buckeyes have scored over 90 points 14 times this season and are 13-1 in those games.

History vs. West Virginia

  • Ohio State and West Virginia are meeting for the 13th time on Sunday.
  • The Buckeyes have never lost to the Mountaineers, winning the previous 12 meetings.
  • The teams have played seven previous times in Columbus, including a great game in the NCAA Tournament in 2004, won by the Buckeyes 73-67.
  • Ohio State went to Morgantown in the season-opener in 2013 and came away with a 70-61 victory.

McGuff vs. West Virginia

  • Head coach Kevin McGuff has a record of 2-1 against West Virginia.
  • The first meeting was at Xavier in the first round of the 2007 NCAA Tournament when West Virginia prevailed 65-52.
  • The 70-61 win in the 2013-14 season-opener was McGuff's first win as Buckeye head coach.

Last Year vs. West Virginia

  • Kelsey Mitchell scored a freshman-record 39 points to lead Ohio State to its largest victory over a ranked team in a 96-54 win over No. 18 West Virginia on Dec. 22, 2015.
  • Ohio State raced-out to a 20-point lead in the first half and after West Virginia cut the lead to eight points early in the second half, the Buckeyes closed the game on a 29-4 run over the final 10 minutes.
  • Mitchell hit eight three-pointers on 10 attempts. She was 12-of-18 from the floor overall and 7-of-11 from the free throw stripe. She was also hampered by foul trouble and played just 27 minutes.
  • Ameryst Alston finished with 26 points, six assists and five assists.
  • Cait Craft struggled from the floor but grabbed a career-high eight rebounds, dished-out a career-high seven assists and totaled a season-high four steals.
  • Shayla Cooper, playing in her first game as a Buckeye, scored 13 points on 6-of-8 shooting and grabbed six rebounds.