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Gophers women commit 25 turnovers in lopsided loss at Ohio State – Twin Cities

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Minnesota committed a season-high 25 turnovers, and three Buckeyes scored in double figures as No. 11 Ohio State ran away from the Gophers, 83-59, Sunday at Value City Arena.

Dorka Juhasz and Aaliyah Patty each had double-doubles for Ohio State, which has won five of its past six games to improve to 12-2 overall, 6-2 in the Big Ten. The Gophers (5-9, 4-8) have lost two straight since winning three in a row.

Kadi Sissoko had team-highs of 13 points and nine rebounds for Minnesota but also had six of the Gophers’ turnovers. Sara Scalia and Klarke Sconiers each added 12 points for the Gophers, who play host to Illinois Wednesday in a 6 p.m. tipoff at Williams Arena.

Juhasz, a 6-foot-4 junior, scored a game-high 18 points to go with 10 rebounds, her eighth double-double of the season. Patty finished with 14 points and 10 boards, and Jacy Sheldon added 17 points and three steals.

“First and third tonight were rough for us, coming out the gates,” Gophers coach Lindsay Whalen said.

Ohio State used three early turnovers to help build a 14-4 lead to start the game, but the Gophers used a 12-5 second-quarter run to pull within four, 30-26, with 3 minutes, 40 seconds left in the half and trailed, 39-30, at intermission. Sissoko hit the first basket of the second half. but it quickly went sideways for Minnesota.

The Buckeyes scored the next 15 points, 13 directly off six Gophers turnovers, for a 54-32 lead and were never threatened again. Six Ohio State players combined for 11 steals.

“The biggest thing was trying to break their press,” Scalia said. “We tried to pass through them and over the top of them, and  obviously that was not working. They’re really long, and we weren’t able to break their press right away and to start third quarter.”

The latter has been an issue for Minnesota all season long. Iowa used a 25-4 third-quarter run to all but end a 94-68 victory last week at Williams Arena. Ohio State led by as many as 28 points in the third and fourth quarters.

“Our goal is always less than 14 (turnovers); that’s a really good number to end with, and we end up with 25,” Whalen said, “and against a team that really flourishes in scoring off live-ball turnovers. We were focused on not having live-ball turnovers. But give them credit; they’re as long and athletic as advertised. After this week, they’re probably a Top 10 team, so give them credit; it’s what they do.”

It was the only regular-season meeting between the clubs.

Gophers leading scorer Jasmine Powell played only 18 minutes and finished with five points (on 1-of-6 shooting) and four turnovers. Battling an ankle injury for the past few weeks, she was held out of the fourth quarter entirely.

“She’s hobbled right now,” Whalen said. “She’s playing through it and giving us what she’s got. I had to weigh putting her back in against trying to get some other guys minutes and grow. … I thought it was beneficial for the team and for Jas.”

Six Buckeyes (9 for 26) players hit 3-pointers, and Ohio State outrebounded the Gophers, 43-35. Still, it was the turnovers that suck out. The Buckeyes got careless in a sloppy fourth quarter and committed six turnovers but still finished with eight fewer than Minnesota.

“We’ve got to take care of the ball,” Scalia said. “The biggest thing for us was the turnovers and rebounds starting off.”

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