COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — C.J. Walker scored 18 points to help No. 21 Ohio State snap a four-game losing streak with a 80-68 win over Nebraska on Tuesday night.
The Buckeyes (12-5, 2-4 Big Ten) hadn’t won since before Christmas, but they took charge early and rolled over the Cornhuskers, whose transfer-heavy lineup is still learning to play together.
Ohio State played typically good defense and finally knocked down some shots, even without suspended guards Luther Muhammad and Duane Washington Jr. available. That put the pressure on guards D.J. Carton and Walker, both of whom played most of the game. Carton finished with 13 points to go along with five assists.
Kaleb Wesson had 13 points and 14 rebounds
Ohio State had started the season 11-1 and was ranked No. 2 in the AP Top 25 before losing to West Virginia, Wisconsin, Maryland and Indiana in a woeful two-week period. They had failed to score 60 points since beating Kentucky 71-65. They reached that total before the mid-way point of the second half Tuesday during 12-0 run.
Thorir Thorbjarnarson paced Nebraska ( 7-10, 2-4) with 15 points and three players had 10. The Huskers shot 42.4% in losing their second in a row.
Ohio State started the game 0 for 5 shooting but Andre Wesson hit three straight 3-pointers and the Buckeyes took off. They led 38-25 at the half, with Justin Ahrens hitting a long 3 at the buzzer. The Buckeyes shot 55%.
Nebraska: The Huskers hoped to come to Columbus and catch Ohio State at the bottom of a slump, but it wasn’t going to happen. They shot better in the second half but couldn’t keep up with the more polished Buckeyes.
Ohio State: The Buckeyes were reeling and needed a feel-good game like this, even if it was against an over-matched opponent. They seemed to get their shooting eye back after struggling mightily getting the ball in the basket in the past two weeks. Fun fact: Last January’s five-game losing streak also ended with a loss to Nebraska.
Nebraska: Hosts Indiana on Saturday.
Ohio State: At Penn State on Saturday.