The Boilermakers methodically carved apart the Buckeyes in the half-court game with crisp ball movement and effective spacing to create mismatches. On defense, Purdue doggedly kept the frustrated and sometimes-impatient Buckeyes from getting to the rim.

Purdue brought five returning starters to St. John Arena for a Big Ten opener against Ohio State on Saturday, and its edge in experience, confidence, discipline and toughness was evident from the opening tip.


Buckeyes coach Kevin McGuff couldn't paint a smiley face on a 66-50 loss that typified the roller-coaster ride of a season that his young team has endured.


"We didn't play well. I didn't coach well," McGuff said. "We got killed on the boards, and we made too many turnovers. Purdue is a veteran team that made things really hard on us today, but we were our own worst enemy way too often."


The final statistics underscored McGuff's assessment.


Ohio State shot just 31.7 percent from the field (19 of 60), committed 19 turnovers and was outrebounded 45-26.


Preferring a more deliberate style, Purdue (10-3, 1-0) methodically carved apart Ohio State (7-5, 0-1) in the half-court game with crisp ball movement and effective spacing to create mismatches. On defense, the Boilermakers doggedly kept the frustrated and sometimes-impatient Buckeyes from getting to the rim.


"We were not here mentally a lot, it seemed like," Ohio State sophomore forward Dorka Juhasz said. "They got a lot of easy layups where we threw the ball literally right into their hands. We let them do whatever they wanted to do. We have to be tougher than that."


Juhasz scored 12 points, grabbed eight rebounds and blocked two shots, but she got few touches after halftime, when Purdue turned a close game into a rout.


Leading just 30-25 early in the third quarter, the Boilermakers turned up their full-court pressure and went on a 16-7 run. The Buckeyes made just two baskets during a stretch of more than seven minutes.


Purdue increased its lead to 21 points in the fourth quarter.


Kayana Traylor had 15 points and Ae'Rianna Harris and Dominique Oden 12 each for the Boilermakers.


One bright spot for Ohio State was the play of freshman point guard Madison Greene of Pickerington Central off the bench. Known for her defensive tenacity, Greene had 12 points, four rebounds and three assists in a 25-plus minutes of action.


"Madison was a presence on the court," McGuff said. "She earned her minutes. She tends to make people around her better."


Greene helped Pickerington Central to a 101-13 record and back-to-back final fours in 2018 and 2019. She decommitted from Penn State last spring and joined Ohio State's highly rated class of seven freshmen.


"All that matters to me is getting wins, but it was fun and exciting to get out there and give us a spark," Greene said. "I try to make my mark on defense and find ways for us to score."


sblackledge@dispatch.com


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