COLUMBUS — Rebeka Mikulasikova scored 23 points and Cotie McMahon added 20 to lead No. 4 state Ohio 105-67 past North Alabama on Sunday.
The Buckeyes (6-0) shot 58.6% from the field as all five starters scored double digits.
North Alabama (3-3) trailed by eight points in the second quarter with less than eight minutes to go, but Ohio State extended their lead with an 11-0 run that was five points clear of Madison Greene.
The Buckeyes led 59-37 at halftime and went up to 39 in less than three minutes.
“I think our pressure had a little effect,” Ohio State coach Kevin McGuff said. “I thought we kind of sped them up and got them out of what they were trying to do and we were able to take some of the turnovers and misses and turn them into points on the other end.”
Greene finished the tournament with 15 points, Taylor Mikesell with 14, and Taylor Thierry with 13 plus five steals.
Ohio State shot up over 60% in each of the first three quarters. Hevynne Bristow finished her career with eight rebounds, helping the Buckeyes to a 37-28 advantage on the glass.
Skyler Gill led the Lions with 23 points and 12 rebounds. North Alabama shot 45.8% and turned the ball 20 times.
“I was pleased with our composure,” said North Alabama coach Missy Tiber. “You don’t want to lose by 40 but I think apart from a couple of little flare-ups they had I thought we were competitive.”
MCMAHON MAKES AN IMPRESSION
Among the three true freshmen on the Ohio State roster, McMahon has started all six games this season.
A native of Centerville, Ohio, McMahon has averaged more than nine points per game. She shot 8 of 13 from the field and her 20 points marked a new career high.
“She was a little more locked in, so I thought it would be a big step for her,” McGuff said. “Getting out of timeouts and stuff, just telling her little things and applying that to the game was a big step for her.”
CHOOSE YOUR BAG
Ohio State forced 20 turnovers, which is its second-most takeaways in the first six games of the season, and 13 steals.
Three Buckeyes stole at least two steals while the team capitalized on 28 points after turnovers.
“One thing that we really talked about and scouted about was how quickly they get the ball out after a shot,” McMahon said. “That’s something we’ve had to adapt to, coming into the game and then seeing it first straight away and then obviously coming out at half-time and really buckled up and adjusted to that.”
North Alabama: The Lions shot under 35.1% from 3-point range for the third straight game. They went 2 of 11 from beyond the arc in the third quarter and 5 of 19 in the second half.
Ohio State: All-conference guard and Buckeyes’ third-leading scorer Jacy Sheldon missed her second straight game. Sheldon, who leads Ohio State with 27 steals, wore a boot on her right foot while on the bench as her team racked up 13 steals.
“Still day-to-day,” McGuff said. “Cautiously optimistic but we’ll have to see how the week goes.”
North Alabama: Host Fisk next Sunday.
State of Ohio: Travels to No. 10 Louisville on Wednesday.