No. 5 Ohio State dispatches Penn State to advance

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) -- Even without the Big Ten's leading scorer
and player of the year, Ohio State was too dominant for Penn State.

Brandie Hoskins scored 14 points to lead the fifth-ranked
Buckeyes to a 64-46 win Friday in the conference tournament
quarterfinals, a thrashing so complete that Ohio State coach Jim
Foster rested Jessica Davenport for most of the game.

"I didn't feel the need or the urge," he said about playing
the 6-foot-5 Davenport after she picked up her second foul in the
opening period. "If a player gets two fouls, she sits.

"And then in the second half, we were still scoring from that
position," Foster said. "We're very capable of doing that."

The top-seeded Buckeyes won their 17th straight game, while the
Lady Lions' had their first losing season in 33 years.

Ohio State (26-2), seeking its first conference tourney
championship, will play defending champion Michigan State in the
semifinals on Sunday. Penn State, a two-time tournament winner,
finished 13-16 for its worst record since 1973.

The game was Ohio State's first since eking out a 61-59 win at
Penn State in the regular-season finale.

"After we played them there, we knew we didn't play well,"
Hoskins said. "Then watching the film, we knew we played

The rematch was no contest.

The Buckeyes so dominated the Lady Lions from the start that
leading scorer Davenport, the two-time conference player of the
year, was on the floor only 9 minutes in the first half and 10
minutes in the second period.

"It's different playing without Jess," said Debbie Merrill,
who added 11 points for the Buckeyes. "Everybody else has to step

Marscilla Packer added 10 for the Buckeyes. Davenport,
constantly double-teamed, made only 2-of-6 shots and had a
season-low six points and five rebounds.

"We let some things get away from us. We didn't take advantage
of that," Penn State coach Rene Portland said of Davenport's
absence. "We tried to get some penetration and didn't succeed."

Penn State was led by Kamela Gissendanner with 15 points and
Amanda Brown with 10.

Davenport had two baskets and Packer had two 3-pointers in a
16-5 start for the Buckeyes. But with Davenport on the bench most
of the period, Hoskins took over, scoring 10 of her 14 points
before the break.

Penn State pulled to 22-17 on a basket by Brown, but the Lady
Lions, who had 15 turnovers in the first half and 21 for the game,
didn't score the rest of the period. A basket and a 3-pointer by
reserve Stephanie Blanton, a 3-pointer by Merrill and another
basket by reserve Alice Jamen completed a 10-0 Ohio State run for a
32-17 lead at halftime.

Hoskins, who averages 12 points, reached that with her first
basket of the second half, starting another 10-0 burst that pushed
the Buckeyes' lead to 44-21. Ohio State's biggest lead was 59-33
with about 4 minutes left, and the Lions never came closer than 16
the rest of the way.

"Our energy was not the same," Portland said. "Ohio State
pressured us defensively and made it difficult for us. Our offense
never got going."