Big Ten Tournament 2012
March 10, 2012 by staff
Big Ten Tournament 2012, But unfortunately for Purdue, Ohio State had all the answers. Especially late in this contest. Behind a game-turning 14-0 run in the second half, the third-seeded Buckeyes aced their quarterfinal test tonight at Bankers Life Fieldhouse, dropping No. 6 Purdue 88-71 and ending any shot the Boilermakers had at claiming a second Big Ten Tournament title in four seasons.
Relying on what seemed like an endless expanse of offensive firepower, Ohio State (26-6) punched its ticket to Saturday’s semifinal round behind a cast of familiar characters. Purdue kept the game close throughout the first 30 minutes, but when the Buckeyes put their foot on the gas late in the game, Purdue (21-12) simply couldn’t keep up.
Too much Jared Sullinger. Too much DeShaun Thomas. Too much Aaron Craft.
Purdue sliced the Buckeye lead to three four separate times in the second half. But on each occurrence, Ohio State offered a quick retort: If it wasn’t Sullinger powering for a basket down low, it was Thomas draining an outside jumper or Aaron Craft finding the lane and finishing.
Sullinger notched game-highs in points (30) and rebounds (12) while Thomas added 22.
D.J. Byrd led the Boilermakers with 20 points off the bench. Terone Johnson had 15, Lewis Jackson 10 and Robbie Hummel, suffering through an off-shooting night (2-for-8 from the floor), settled for six.
With the victory, the Buckeyes are two wins away from a third consecutive Big Ten Tournament title. They’ll face Michigan in the second semifinal Saturday at Bankers Life.
Purdue’s postseason will continue into next week; as of late Friday, ESPN bracketologist Joe Lunardi had the Boilers listed as a No. 9 seed in the NCAA’s East Region.
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