ATHENS, Ohio –- Despite a season-high 20 points from sophomore guard Amani Burke (Columbus, Ohio), the Ohio Women's basketball team (9-8, 3-3 MAC) fell to Buffalo (14-3, 5-1 MAC) 67-63 on Wednesday night (Jan. 17) at the Convocation Center.
HOW WE GOT HERE
The first points of the game were scored by Burke on a lay-up thanks to a steal from junior guard Dominique Doseck (Athens, Ohio).
The Bobcats would then just make one more field goal the rest of the quarter, but were able to keep pace with Buffalo because they forced 12 turnovers. At the end of the first quarter, Ohio trailed 17-13.
In the second quarter, the Bulls would jump out to a 24-14 lead, thanks to two Ohio turnovers. The Bobcats would cut the lead to 29-24 later in the quarter, using a 10-5 run highlighted by lay-ups from Doseck, Burke and Hooks.
At the half, Ohio trailed 32-26. Burris led the Bobcats with seven points and four rebounds at the break.
In the third quarter, the shooting yips finally left the Bobcats as they outscore Buffalo 26-18 and made their first 3-pointers of the game.
Burke shined by leading all scorers with eight points in the quarter, coming from the beyond the arc, the field and the charity stripe. Because of this, the Bobcats were able to tie the game at 39-39 with 3:51 to go in the third quarter.
With 3:15 left in the third quarter, Burke nailed a 3-pointer to give Ohio its first lead of the game. Ohio would stretch its lead to 47-43 at one point and led at the end of the quarter, 52-50.
In the fourth quarter, the Bulls tied the game up 52-52 with 9:20 to go in the contest. The two teams went toe-to-toe for the rest of the quarter until three straight free throws gave Buffalo a 63-60 lead with 3:19 to play.
Ohio wouldn't score until two minutes later off of a Burke free throw. With .59 seconds to go, Hooks made a lay-up to tie the game at 63. But, a Bulls lay-up and a missed 3-pointer left Ohio with a loss.
Burke led all scorers with her season-high 20-points. She shot 7-of-17 from the field and 5-of-10 from the free-throw line. Burke also added eight rebounds.
Burris added seven rebounds and two steals in 19 minutes of play.
Hooks added an assist, seven steals and four rebounds to her stat line on the night.
Redshirt senior Taylor Agler (Westerville, Ohio) dished out a team-high four assists.
As a team, Ohio was 22-of-66 (.333) from the field, 3-of-20 (.150) from three-point range and 16-of-24 (.667) from the free throw line.
Ohio was out rebounded by Buffalo, 42-40. Ohio also dished out seven assists and had 17 steals. Ohio also forced the Bulls to turn the ball over 20 times and scored 21 points off of them.
Ohio also scored 36 points in the paint, 17 second chance points and had 25 bench points.
Leading Buffalo was Cierra Dillard with 20 points, followed by Summer Hemphill with 19.
The Bulls went 22-of-49 (.449) from the field, 3-of-12 (.250) from three-point range and 20-of-33 (.606) from the free throw line.
Buffalo dished out 15 assists, had six blocks and nine steals; forcing 25 Bobcat turnovers.
"We somehow outscored them in the paint, and that's important. It seemed bleak at times, and I think our kids deserve a lot of credit for continuing to attack, and not settling, and not backing down. There was a lot of contact at the rim, they had some really nice blocked shots." – Head coach Bob Boldon
"It's tough. Our inability to make shots has at times almost slowed our offense down to a complete stop.I think our players deserve a lot of credit for continuing to fight through that, continuing to get defensive stops, and continuing to run offense and get shots." – Head coach Bob Boldon
"There's never a perfect game. I still turned it over, I still had like four fouls. I do stuff that I regret, or I do stuff well. I think I'm playing well, but I think I could play better." – Sophomore guard Amani Burke
The Bobcats will return to conference play on Saturday, Jan. 20 when they face MAC East foe Bowling Green. Tip-off is set for 1 p.m. inside the Stroh Center and can be seen on ESPN3.