Ohio State earned its first opportunity to play a ranked team this season by easily defeating IUPUI in the first round of the Buckeye Classic at St. John Arena on Saturday afternoon.
Ohio State’s Sarah Schulze broke a 6-all tie with a pair of free throws at the 17:48 mark, points that began a 22-2 run that lasted more than eight minutes and gave the third-ranked Buckeyes (7-0) a 28-8 advantage.
They cruised to an 88-33 win from there, clearing the way for a matchup with No. 22 California (3-1) on Sunday in the Buckeye Classic final a 2 p.m. contest to be broadcast by the Big Ten Network. The Bears beat Southern 78-47 earlier in the day.
Seven different Buckeyes scored during the early run, with Schulze leading the way with six points. Jantel Lavender added five, Brittany Johnson three and Samantha Prahalis, Andrea Walker, Shavelle Little and Tayler Hill two apiece.
Prahalis had five assists during the run and finished with 10. She also notched 12 points for her third double-double of the season. Lavender tied Prahalis for the team lead in scoring while Little added 10 points.
Ohio State led 43-16 at the break and by as many as 57 in the second half.
For the game, the Buckeyes forced 29 turnovers and committed six.
“I think we took care of the ball," Ohio State head coach Jim Foster said. "We executed and we moved the ball well. We scored 88 points so I’m not going to complain. I was encouraged by our defensive intensity. We had a significant defensive practice yesterday and it carried over well today.”
All 13 Buckeyes who saw the floor scored at least two points.
Clara Mitchell led the Jaguars (0-5) with eight points.
Former Buckeye All-American Katie Smith will be part of the BTN broadcast team for the Cal game.