March 2, 2013
BOWLING GREEN, Ohio - The Ohio University men's basketball team (21-8, 12-2 MAC) clinched a top-two seed in the MAC Championship with a 78-65 win at Bowling Green (12-17, 6-8 MAC) Saturday afternoon.
The win was Ohio's first at Bowling Green since 2007 and set a new school record for league wins (12) during a 16-game MAC schedule. With the win, Ohio has now posted a program-record 50 wins over the past two seasons.
The Bobcats are 6-1 on the road in MAC play for the first time in school history.
Senior forward Reggie Keely (University Heights, Ohio) led the Bobcats with his fourth 20-point effort (21 pts,10-15 FG) of the season. Junior guard Nick Kellogg (Westerville, Ohio) added 16 points, connected on 4-of-9 3-point attempts and tied a career-high with five steals.
Senior guards Walter Offutt (Indianapolis, Ind.) and D.J. Cooper (Chicago, Ill.) chipped in 12 and 10 points, respectively.
Cooper dished out six assists and passed Orlando Smart (San Francisco) for 12th on the all-time NCAA Division I assists list. Cooper now has 907 assists in his career.
With his second 3-pointer of the game, Cooper tied Tommy Freeman (2008-11) for first all-time at Ohio in career 3-pointers made (259). The Bobcats shot 52.5 percent (32-61) for the game and posted 14 steals. Ohio forced the Falcons into 22 turnovers which the Green and White turned into 22 points. Ohio also held a 40-34 edge in points in the paint.
Ohio, which leads the nation in assists per game, dished out 18 assists Saturday and the team has now distributed 537 assists on the year. The school record for assists in a season is 540.
The Falcons jumped out to a 7-2 lead, before Ohio used a 12-0 run to move ahead by eight (15-7) with 10:56 to go in the first half. Keely had six points during the Ohio surge.
Bowling Green responded with six-straight points to move within two (17-15), but the Bobcats countered with seven more - capped by an Offutt lay-in - to go back up nine (24-15).
The Bobcats moved ahead by 10 (29-19) on a bucket by Keely and extended the advantage to 13 (34-21) on a steal and finish by Kellogg with 4:55 remaining in the half.
Bowling Green responded by scoring 12 of the half's final 18 points, but Ohio took a 39-33 lead into the break.
The Bobcats shot 47.2 percent (17-36) from the floor in the stanza and forced 14 BG turnovers while making nine steals. The turnovers led to 15 points for the `Cats. Kellogg and Keely paced Ohio in the half with 10 points each.
Bowling Green scored the first seven points of the second half and moved ahead by one (40-39) on a lay-in by A'ustin Calhoun three minutes into the stanza.
A Cooper 3-pointer put Ohio back in front (42-40), and seven-straight points from Keely gave the Bobcats a 49-42 edge with 13:53 to play.
A bucket from the Falcons' Richaun Holmes cut the Ohio lead to five (55-50), but the Bobcats went back up by nine (66-57) on a lay-in by Cooper with 6:28 to go.
BG made two-consecutive baskets to get back within five (66-61) but back-to-back 3-pointers from Cooper and Kellogg gave Ohio a 74-61 lead with 2:14 to go that the `Cats would not relinquish.
Ohio's two-game road trip concludes with a 7 p.m. contest at Buffalo on Tuesday (March 5). The game will be broadcast locally in Western New York on Time Warner Cable SportsChannel.
In addition, "Voice of the Bobcats" Russ Eisenstein and Rob Cornelius will call the action on the Ohio IMG Sports Network powered by Horizon, with streaming audio available on OhioBobcats.com.
- GO BOBCATS! -