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Washington leads No. 23 OSU’s rally past No. 11 Rutgers

NCAA Basketball: Rutgers at Ohio State

Dec 23, 2020; Columbus, Ohio, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes guard Duane Washington Jr. (4) defended by Rutgers Scarlet Knights guard Paul Mulcahy (4) during the second half at Value City Arena. Mandatory Credit: Joseph Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

Joseph Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Duane Washington Jr. scored 22 points and No. 23 Ohio State rallied from a 16-point second-half deficit to beat No. 11 Rutgers 80-68 on Wednesday.

E.J. Liddell had 21 points and Kyle Young added 17 points and 12 rebounds for Ohio State (7-1, 1-1 Big Ten), which trailed 48-32 with 15 minutes left in the game. The Buckeyes went on a 20-1 run late in the second half to seize control and hand Rutgers (6-1, 2-1) its first loss.

Ron Harper Jr. had 20 points, Montez Mathis scored 16 and Jacob Young added 12 for the Scarlet Knights.

Harper had 10 points in the first half as Rutgers led 38-28 at the break. Young and Geo Baker each had eight first-half points for the Scarlet Knights. Harper had seven points during a 12-2 run that gave Rutgers a 22-11 lead. The Scarlet Knights led by as many as 13 points in the first half.

Harper hit a 19-footer and a pair of 3s a minute apart early in the second half for a 48-32 lead with 15:31 left.

Washington answered with three rapid-fire 3s of his own. Rutgers still led 61-55 with 7 1/2 minutes left before Ohio State dug in on defense and went on its decisive run, which included eight points from Washington and four each from Liddell and Kyle Young.


Rutgers: Playing without starting center Cliff Omoruyi, the Scarlet Knights put forth a strong effort to remain undefeated but did not have the depth to finish the game. They get six days to rest and recuperate before their next Big Ten game.

Ohio State: Coming off a win over UCLA, the Buckeyes shot 38% in the first half and things looked bleak. But Washington and Liddell came on with big second-half performances.


Rutgers: Hosts Purdue on Tuesday.

Ohio State: Visits Northwestern on Saturday.