LSU 76

(7-4, 1-2 away)

(21) Ohio State 78

(10-0, 8-0 home)

1:00 PM ET, December 31, 2005

Value City Arena, Columbus, Ohio

1 2 T
LSU 43 3376
#21OSU 39 3978

Top Performers

LSU: T. Thomas 14 Pts, 11 Reb, 4 Ast, 4 Stl, 5 Blk

Ohio State: T. Dials 24 Pts, 8 Reb, 1 Ast, 3 Stl, 1 Blk

Buckeyes come back from 15 down to LSU

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) -- Matt Sylvester, who hit the 3-pointer that dashed No. 1 Illinois' unbeaten season last March, hit one with 5.5 seconds left Saturday to cap a furious Ohio State comeback and keep the 21st-ranked Buckeyes undefeated with a 78-76 victory over LSU.

Ohio State (10-0) trailed by 15 points with just over 5½ minutes left and was down by 10 with 2½ minutes remaining before making every big play imaginable down the stretch.

Terence Dials led the Buckeyes with 24 points, Sylvester and Ron Lewis each added 14 and Je'Kel Foster had 12.

LSU (7-4), rattled near the end with a lineup dominated by freshmen, was led by Glen "Big Baby" Davis' 25 points. Darrel Mitchell added 16, Tyrus Thomas had 14 points, 11 rebounds and five blocked shots and Tasmin Mitchell had 12 points.

Davis' basket off a backdoor lob pass with 3:23 left gave the Tigers a 76-66 lead. But that was the final points for an LSU team that had three freshmen in the starting lineup and six among its top nine players.

Foster hit a 3-pointer from the right wing with 2:25 left and, after a miss by Davis, Sylvester's 3-pointer bounced around the rim before falling with 1:44 left, cutting the lead to 76-72.

Darrel Mitchell's 3-pointer was off the mark and Dials rebounded. The Buckeyes pulled within a point on point guard Jamar Butler's only 3-pointer of the game as the clock hit the 1-minute mark.

After a timeout, the Tigers tried to regroup but Thomas' off-balance driving layup missed and the ball ended up going out of bounds off an Ohio State player with 36 seconds left. LSU inbounded again and guard Ben Voogd patiently dribbled out front. He passed quickly to Davis, whose hurried air ball from 18 feet resulted in a shot-clock violation with 22 seconds left.

Ohio State called a timeout and then tried to work the ball inside to Dials, but Foster ended up sandwiched between two defenders at the free throw line. The ball popped loose for an instant and he regained it, awkwardly tossing a pass to Sylvester who was unguarded in the left corner. Sylvester set his feet, took his time and hit nothing but net on the 3-pointer as a crowd of 16,136 erupted.

The teams traded timeouts before Voogd brought the ball up the court and passed to Davis, whose 20-footer with a second left was off the mark, Thomas failing to tip it in as the buzzer sounded.

The game was a perfect follow-up to the last meeting between the teams. LSU beat the Buckeyes 113-101 in double overtime on Jan. 15, 2005. Eleven players scored in double figures, and the Tigers outrebounded the Buckeyes -- who hit a school-record 18 3-pointers -- by 20.

LSU, leading the nation in rebounding margin, backed up that statistic with a 35-29 advantage on Saturday, its young and talented front line dominating beneath the baskets except for when Dials was making one-on-one moves.

The Tigers led by 13 points in the first half only to have the Buckeyes cut it to 43-39 at halftime.

Ohio State came in as one of only nine unbeatens left in Division I, the first time it had opened 9-0 since the 1990-91 team won its first 17 games.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


Team Stat Comparison

Points 76 78
FG Made-Attempted 28-60 (.467) 25-53 (.472)
3P Made-Attempted 3-10 (.300) 7-18 (.389)
FT Made-Attempted 17-23 (.739) 21-24 (.875)
Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 22 (0/0) 17 (0/0)
Largest Lead 15 2

2005-06 Season

» Dec 31, 2005 @OSU 78, LSU 76Recap