COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Taylor Mikesell scored 20 of her 25 points in the second half, leading No. 14 Ohio State to an 87-75 victory over No. 5 Tennessee on Tuesday night in the season opener.
Ohio State erased Tennessee’s 41-33 halftime lead and outscored the Volunteers 30-13 in the third quarter. Mikesell powered the Buckeyes’ surge as they closed the third on a 12-0 run, and she contributed 10 points during that span.
The Volunteers narrowed the lead down to eight points with 5:43 to go, but the Buckeyes wouldn’t let it get close.
Reigning Big Ten regular-season champion Ohio State forced 29 turnovers, leading to 37 points. The Buckeyes shot 51% from the field, including 63.3% in the second half.
Mikesell went 4 for 10 on her 3-point attempts. Jacy Sheldon swiped a career-high eight steals and scored 14 points as Ohio State had five players reach double figures.
Jordan Horston led Tennessee with 20 points and Jasmine Powell contributed 10. The Volunteers shot 48% and held a 40-30 advantage on the glass.
Tennessee: Powell, who transferred after three seasons at Minnesota, shot 7 of 12. She’s among four Tennessee transfers, and three of whom earned all-conference honors at their previous programs.
Ohio State: Mikesell’s three 3-pointers in the second half helped the Buckeyes overcome a 1-for-10 start from beyond the arc. She was Ohio State’s 3-point leader as the team shot 37.6% from 3-point land last season, finishing second in the Big Ten.
Tennessee: Hosts UMass Tuesday.
Ohio State: Travels to Boston College on Sunday.