WILDCAT MEN'S HOOP DEFEATED AT OHIO STATE, 77-59

Sturgill Leads 'Cats With 16 Points

Ben Sturgill

COLUMBUS, OHIO-- The University of New Hampshire men's basketball team hung tough in the first half but was unable to sustain its strong play in the second as Ohio State, led by Terence Dials' game-high 24 points and 14 rebounds, defeated the Wildcats at Value City Arena, 77-59 on Tuesday evening.

UNH was led offensively by senior center Ben Sturgill (Hamilton, Ohio) as he scored 16 points against his home state's University and connected on 8-13 field goal attempts from the floor.

The Wildcats (4-6 overall), kept it close through the first half and held a 23-22 advantage on a three-pointer by freshman forward Mike Christensen (Reston, Va.) with 8:53 remaining before the intermission. However, a jumper by J.J. Sullinger with :45 remaining in the half gave the Buckeyes their biggest lead of the opening stanza (41-35).

In the second half Ohio State (10-2 overall) turned up the pressure on the Wildcats and outscored the visitors in the opening three minutes (10-3) to take a 13-point lead (49-36). UNH managed to trim the lead down to just 10 points (58-48) with 9:02 to play, but the Buckeyes took over late in the game and led by as many as 20 points (77-57) with 1:23 left in the contest.

In addition to the 16 points by Sturgill, sophomore guard Jermaine Anderson (Beverly, Mass.) chipped in 10 points. Also turning in good numbers was sophomore forward Blagoj Janev (Sydney, Australia) as he led UNH with eight rebounds and scored nine points on the evening. Freshman guard Chris Vetrano (Andover, Mass.) led UNH with six assists.

Ohio State outrebounded UNH by a 43-29 margin in rebounding and had 70 field goals attempts as compared to just 53 by the Wildcats. However UNH shot well, connecting on 24 field goals for a shooting percentage of .453, as compared to a .414 mark by the home team, which made 29 field goals.

The Wildcats will return to action on Sunday Jan. 2 when the team travels to play America East Conference foe UMBC. Game time is 4 p.m.

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