ATHENS, Ohio - Junior guard Walter Offutt scored a career-high 19 points to lead the Ohio University men's basketball team (14-4; 2-2 MAC) to a convincing 87-65 win over Kent State Wednesday night at the Convocation Center.
Offutt (Indianapolis, Ind.) was one of five players, who finished in double figures. Junior guard D.J. Cooper (Chicago, Ill.), sophomore guard Nick Kellogg (Westerville, Ohio), junior forward Ivo Baltic (Kansas City, Mo.) and junior forward Reggie Keely(University Heights, Ohio) also joined Offutt in double figures, finishing with 18, 15, 11 and 10 points, respectively. The Bobcats are now 9-1 this season when playing inside the Convo.
Ohio finished the game connecting on 11-of-21 3-point attempts. Kellogg hit a season-high five from beyond the arc. The Bobcats out-rebounded Kent State 37-25. Ohio also pulled down 16 offensive rebounds, which marks the fifth time this season that it has recorded 15 offensive rebounds or more.
The Bobcats outscored Kent State 22-4 on second chance points and 25-12 on points off of turnovers.
Ohio came out firing on all cylinders going on a 17-7 run while holding Kent State without a field goal until the 13:45 minute mark. Key contributors for the Bobcats during the run were Kellogg and Cooper who went a combined 3-of-4 from 3-point range. The Golden Flashes answered back with a 23-7 run taking a 30-25 lead with 5:41 remaining in the first half.
After trading baskets, the Bobcats went on a 14-6 run to end the half to take a 41-38 lead into the locker room. Offutt led all first half scorers with 12 points and Cooper added 10 points. Baltic also chipped in with eight points and a team-best four rebounds for Ohio.
The Bobcats shot 42 percent from the field, hitting on 15-of-36 shots and connected at a 50 percent clip from 3-point range (6-of-12). Ohio also pulled down 17 rebounds, nine of which were on the offensive end. On the defensive end, the Bobcats forced Kent State into 11 turnovers.
The Golden Flashes shot 70 percent from the field hitting on 14-of-20 shot attempts. Chris Evans led Kent State with 11 points.
Ohio came out of the locker room hot once again as it opened up a 62-40 lead at the 12:27 mark thanks to a 21-2 surge. Cooper keyed the run as he scored eight points during the stretch. The Bobcats also held Kent State to just one field goal over the first seven and a half minutes.
Ohio outscored Kent State 46-27 in the second half.
Cooper and Keely led the Bobcats in the second half with each recording eight points. Offutt contributed seven of his game high 19 as Ohio shot 48 percent from the field and 56 percent from 3-point range. The Bobcats also hit 15-of-17 foul shots in the second half.
Evans led Kent State in scoring in the second half putting up nine of his team high 18 points. The Golden Flashes shot 40 percent from the field and 11 percent from 3-point range.
This was the seventh-biggest win for the Bobcats in series history and largest since an 80-54 win over the Golden Flashes back in 2005.
The Bobcats return to action on Saturday as they welcome Miami to the Convocation Center for Gary Trent Day, beginning at 2 p.m. Ohio will honor Trent's No. 20 jersey in a halftime ceremony.