Buckeyes Head To Paradise Jam

Alex Hart leads the country with 21 blocks
Alex Hart leads the country with 21 blocks
Nov. 25, 2014

Date: November 27-29, 2014
Venue: UVI Sports and Fitness Center 
Location: St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands
Radio: ESPN 1460AM 
Online Coverage:  Live Video  | Live Stats  |  Game Notes  |  Twitter Updates

Setting the Scene

  • The scene couldn't be much better for the Buckeyes as they leave the 20 degree winter weather and head to paradise for the US Virgin Islands Paradise Jam.
  • Ohio State will play three games on the trip starting with Clemson at 1:15 ET on Thanksgiving Day. That will be followed by a game against Wichita State on Friday, Nov. 28, at 1:15 ET. The Buckeyes will close the tournament against Florida Gulf Coast on Nov. 29, at 3:30 ET.
  • Ohio State heads south with a 2-2 record. The Buckeyes are coming off a 96-86 victory over VCU last Sunday.
  • The games will be streamed live online at www.paradisejam.com.
  • The games can also be heard on ESPN 1460 AM in the Columbus area and for FREE on www.OhioStateBuckeyes.com.

    Last Time OUt

  • The Buckeyes got a combined 63 points from its backcourt duo of Ameryst Alston and Kelsey Mitchell to race past VCU 96-86.
  • Alston led all scorers with 34 points, her second 30-point game this season.
  • Mitchell played just 25 minutes because of foul troubles but still finished with a season-high 29 points.
  • Alexa Hart continued to be a force on the defensive end, notched eight blocks to go along with her 12 points.
  • Grad student Amy Scullion made her season debut and provided an immediate spark as she grabbed a team-high seven rebounds in just 14 minutes of work.
  • The Buckeyes shot almost 58 percent in the opening half and took a 52-43 lead into the break. But VCU scored the first eight points of the second half to cut the margin to one.
  • Alston scored the next four points to spark a run for the Buckeyes which pushed the lead out to 14 at 70-56. Again VCU came back and after three-straight three-pointers, the lead was down to three with four minutes to go.
  • Alston against halted the run with six-straight points over to next two minutes to give the Buckeyes the cushion it needed to close-out the game.

    A Quick Look At The Field

  • Clemson comes into the week with a 3-1 mark overall. Its only setback came at the hands of No. 2 South Carolina.
  • The Tigers are led by preseason All-ACC guard Nikki Dixon who is averaging 14.0 ppg and 4.5 rpg.
  • Freshmen Shelbie Davenport (12.8) and Cha'nelle Perry (11.5) have started all four games and are also averaging in double-figures.
  • Wichita State enters the tournament at 2-1 with wins over Creighton and UT Arlington. It lone loss was at Eastern Washington.
  • The Shockers have three players averaging in double-figures led by Alex Harden's 18 ppg. Michaela Dapprich is averaging 17.3 ppg and 5.7 rebounds while Jamillah Bonner tops the team at 8.0 rpg and 14.0 ppg.
  • WSU has been to back-to-back NCAA Tournaments under seventh-year head coach Jody Adams who has won 120 games at Wichita State.
  • Florida Gulf Coast is 3-1 on the year and is averaging 89 points per game.
  • The Eagles have beaten Georgia Washington, FIU and Ave Maria with its only loss coming at Auburn.
  • Junior guard Stephanie Haas leads four Eagles in double-figures as she is averaging over 15 points and four rebounds per game.

    Buckeyes At A Glance

  • The Buckeyes have started the year at an even 2-2 after wins over St. Francis and VCU while dropping close games at Virginia and home against No. 24 Georgia.
  • The team was ravished by injuries in October as three players -- Mykala Waterman, Chelsea Mitchell and Kianna Holland -- all suffered ACL injuries and will miss the season.
  • That left second-year head coach Kevin McGuff with seven eligible players for the start of the season. He has since added grad student Amy Scullion to the roster.
  • The back court duo of junior Ameryst Alston and freshman Kelsey Mitchell has carried the team through the first four games. The two have combined to average over 53 points per game.
  • Alston has notched a pair of 30+ point games, including a career-high 39 points against St. Francis. She was named B1G Player of the Week on Nov. 17.
  • Mitchell has scored at least 26 points in all four games and leads the team with 16 three-pointers. She made seven in the game against Georgia, which was the second-most in a game by a Buckeye in school-history.
  • Freshman Alexa Hart has been a shown why she was a coveted recruit out of high school. She has blocked a Big Ten leading 21 shots so far this season and is averaging 9.8 points and 6.0 rebounds per game.
  • Fellow freshman Asia Doss has started all four games and has been doing a little bit of everything. She is just 5-7 but is grabbing 5.0 rebounds per game and leads the team with 17 assists.
  • The return of Kalpana Beach and Amy Scullion have helped bolster the team's presence inside. Beach missed the last two seasons with knee injuries and started her first game this season against VCU. She scored 12 points and grabbed nine rebounds against St. Francis.
  • Scullion joined the team in mid-November after enrolling in medical school at Ohio State this fall. She played in her first game against VCU and grabbed a team-high seven rebounds in 14 minutes.

    Good Start For Mitchell

  • Freshman Kelsey Mitchell admitted to being a little nervous in her first collegiate game at Virginia on Nov. 14.
  • After a slow start that night, she finished with 26 points, four assists and a pair of rebounds and the nerves were gone.
  • All she has done since is provide the scoring spark for the team. She scored 28 points and dished-out six assists against St. Francis, hit seven three-pointers against Georgia to finish with 26 points and score 29 points in just 25 minutes against VCU.
  • Mitchell leads the Big Ten in scoring at 27.3 points per game. She is also dishing-out four assists per game and has a team-high eight steals.

    Alston Filling It Up Early

  • Junior Ameryst Alston had a great finish to her sophomore year and it looked like she didn't miss a beat in the offseason.
  • She scored a team-high 27 against Virginia and then lit-up St. Francis for 39 points on 15-of-18 from the floor and 4-of-5 from beyond the arc.
  • Her 39 points were tied for the third-most in a single-game by a Buckeye in school-history.
  • She then led the Buckeyes to a win over VCU by scoring a game-high 34 points.
  • Those were her sixth and seventh 30-point games of her career.
  • She is shooting over 54 percent from the floor in the first four games.

    Crazy 1-2 Punch

  • Guards Ameryst Alston and Kelsey Mitchell are one of the top-scoring combos not only in the Big Ten but in the country.
  • The tandem is averaging over 53 points per game which is the best 1-2 punch in the country.
  • Mitchell's 27.3 ppg is fifth-best in the country and Alston's 26.3 ppg is ninth-best.
  • They have made 26 of the team's 36 three-pointers.
  • The duo is 38-of-48 from the free throw line for nearly 80 percent.

    Chasing 1,000

  • Junior Ameryst Alston has 972 career points and needs just 28 points to reach 1,000.
  • She would become the 31st Buckeye to reach to 1,000-point plateau.
  • Alston scored 666 points last season as a sophomore which was the sixth-most points in a single-season in school-history.

    Not In Her House

  • Freshman Alexa Hart is not letting anyone get a free look against her so far this season.
  • Hart has blocked a nation-leading 21 shots this season.
  • She has blocked eight shots in a game twice (St. Francis and VCU).
  • She also notched her first-career double-double with 18 points and a game-high 11 rebounds against St. Francis.
  • Her eight blocks in those games were tied for the fourth-most in a single-game by Buckeye in school-history.