Buckeyes upset Cyclones in first round of NCAA Tournament
TULSA, Okla. — Ohio State was a bubble team on Selection Sunday. One week later, the Buckeyes will be playing in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.
Kaleb Wesson scored 21 and collected 12 rebounds as 11th-seeded Ohio State upset No. 6 seed Iowa State 62-59 Friday night in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.
Keyshawn Woods scored 19 and Musa Jallow had 11 to make it three players in double digits for Ohio State. The Buckeyes gathered 12 offensive rebounds compared to Iowa State's six.
"I imposed myself because of my preparation," Wesson said. "My coaches and my teammates, they prepare me every day in practice — push me to finish shots that sometimes it's hard to finish."
Ohio State (20-14) won their opening game in the NCAA Tournament for the second straight year under head coach Chris Holtmann. Holtmann is now 5-0 in first round games.
Marial Shayok led the Cyclones (23-12) with 23 points on 17 attempts. Cameron Lard scored 12 points and Lindell Wigginton had 14 to make it three Iowa State players in double figures. Iowa State took the lead once in the second half and missed a 3-point attempt to tie the game in the closing seconds.
"We just weren't good enough tonight," Iowa State head coach Steve Prohm said. "We still had opportunities down the stretch. We couldn't get it done."
It was the Ohio State defense that stole the show in Tulsa. Iowa State entered Friday's game averaging over 77 points per game and were No. 9 nationally in offensive efficiency.
"Kaleb and other guys were able to impact some shots at the rim," Holtmann said. "[Iowa State] are one of the best offensive teams in the country. It was a big challenge."
The Buckeyes forced a 10-minute stretch of zero made field goals from Iowa State in the first half and held the Cyclones to 29 percent from beyond the arc.
Musa Jallow started both Big Ten tournament games for the Buckeyes and also got the start Friday. Jallow led the team in steals, recorded a block and was 5-for-5 from the field.
"[Jallow] was tremendous," Holtmann said. "His steal late was a momentum changer for us."
Ohio State finished the game having not made a field goal in nearly three minutes.
"We know our defense travels with us, and that was the most important thing," Woods said. "That was the last three minutes. Making sure we was locked in and getting as many stops as possible to win the game."
The Buckeyes will play in the round of 32 Sunday against the No. 3 seed Houston Cougars. Houston defeated Georgia State Friday by a score of 84-55.