Grande leads Buckeyes to fourth straight victory

From staff reports

Carmen Grande had game-high totals of 17 points and five assists while playing a full 40 minutes and three other players scored in double figures as Ohio State edged Wisconsin 61-50 in a Big Ten women’s basketball game on Thursday night in Madison, Wisconsin.

Janai Crooms and Carly Santoro added 11 points apiece and Dorka Juhasz recorded her 10th double-double of the season with 10 points and 14 rebounds as the Buckeyes (14-12, 10-7) moved into a fourth-place tie in the league standings.

Ohio State has won a season-high four consecutive games and has victories in four of its past five. The Buckeyes host Rutgers at 2 p.m. Sunday in Value City Arena in their regular-season finale.

Grande, a senior graduate transfer from Ball State, made a basket just before the buzzer to give Ohio State a 31-18 halftime lead. She and freshmen Crooms and Juhasz combined for 22 points in the first half.

The Buckeyes then scored the first five points of the third quarter to push their lead to 36-18 before Wisconsin (13-16, 4-13) went on a 10-0 run to close within eight points.

Grande made a jumper and Santoro a three-point basket on OSU’s next two possessions to push the lead back to 13 points and the Badgers never seriously threatened again despite two scoring droughts by Ohio State.

Wisconsin scored nine consecutive points in the fourth quarter to trim the Buckeyes’ advantage to 54-46 with 2:05 remaining, but Grande made a layup and two free throws and Santoro added two free throws to push the lead back to 60-48.

Marsha Howard scored 15 points to lead three Wisconsin players in double figures, but the Badgers made only 18 of 53 shots from the field (34 percent) and 2 of 12 from three-point range.