March 10, 2006
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - Ron Lewis scored 17 points and No. 7 Ohio State rallied from 12 points down in the second half with a flurry of 3-point baskets to beat Penn State 63-56 Friday in the quarterfinals of the Big Ten tournament.
The top-seeded Buckeyes advanced to Saturday's semifinals against either Wisconsin or Indiana.
Ohio State (24-4) never led until there were less than six minutes to go, when a 3-pointer by Jamar Butler put the Buckeyes up 50-49. Ohio State had seven 3-pointers - including two by Lewis and two by Matt Sylvester- during a 28-11 run that erased a 42-30 lead by the eighth-seeded Nittany Lions (15-14).
Two free throws by Je'Kel Foster sealed the game with 24 seconds to go.
Terence Dials, the Big Ten player of the year, added 13 points and 10 rebounds for the Buckeyes. Penn State was led by Jamelle Cornley, who had 18 points, and Geary Claxton and Travis Parker, who had 12 each.
Penn State used the same zone defense that worked Thursday in a first-round victory over Northwestern, forcing the Buckeyes to shoot from the outside.
But Ohio State missed its first six shots and 11 of its first 13 against the Lions' zone. The Buckeyes went the first 6 1/2 minutes without a field goal and fell behind 7-0 and 13-5 before a spinning layup by J.J. Sullinger started a 10-2 run that brought them back into the game.
Ohio State continued forcing the ball inside to Dials, who scored underneath and then made one of two free throws to pull the Buckeyes within 15-10. Sylvester rebounded the miss of Dials' second free throw and scored, then Butler hit a 3-pointer to tie the game for the first time.
Penn State had a 27-24 lead at halftime, and Ohio State missed its first eight shots of the second half as the Lions slowly widened their lead.
A dunk by Claxton, a basket by Cornley and a 3-pointer by Mike Walker gave Penn State its biggest lead at 42-30 before a 3-pointer by Lewis started Ohio State's comeback.
For the game, the Buckeyes was 10-of-30 on 3-pointers to just 3-of-17 for Penn State.