It didn't matter where Jordan Dartis shot the ball on the floor Tuesday night. Because most of the time, it went in. 

Akron tried as best it could to slow down Dartis, but whether he was open or not didn't matter one bit.

Dartis posted a career-high 38 points on 10 made 3-pointers to lead Ohio to a 99-75 win over Akron on Tuesday night at The Convo.

The win snapped a four-game skid for the Bobcats, ending a streak of seven losses in the last eight games. Behind Dartis' shooting performance and four other players in double figures, here are three things to takeaway from Ohio's dominating win.

1. Dartis

Dartis could do nothing last Saturday as he watched Ohio blow a late lead and fall in double overtime to Central Michigan, 101-98. On the bench with a hip injury, he had to sit and watch the Bobcats lose a heartbreaker at home. 

On Tuesday, though, the only people left powerless were the Zips.

Dartis made long and short 3-pointers, whether or not he had a hand in his face. Dartis had more bounce in his step than he'd shown in a long time this season, despite a nagging hip injury. 

He finished with 38 points on 13-of-20 shooting with five rebounds and three assists.

And he also put himself tied for No. 3 in Ohio history with 10 made 3-pointers in a game. It was a record night for both himself and the Bobcats, who just wanted to enjoy the moment.

"All I can really say is not many games are gonna happen like that, whether it's me, Mike, Gavin, or anybody on this team can have the ability to have that night," Dartis said. "I'm gonna say thank you to my teammates just finding me, screening for me, giving me the ball when I was open. I just took opportunities and knocked down open shots when I was open."

He ended the first half with 26 points on 6-of-9 shooting from 3-point range. It didn't matter where he shot from, because it was likely going in. 

Ohio scored a season-high 56 points in the first half on the back of Dartis.

"He was absolutely ridiculously on fire," coach Saul Phillips said. "We ran 30 possessions in practice yesterday and he hit five threes. It was his first full practice that he'd been through since Christmas, so I knew he was feeling pretty good. But if this is feeling pretty good, I'd like to see him feeling great."

2. The Others

It's hard to standout when a teammate has 38 points and is making 3-pointers from anywhere on the floor

But it shouldn't go without notice that the entire Bobcats roster had a hand in the blowout win. It was just harder to see.

"He can shoot like that on any given night, but then the way he did tonight, he opened up everything for everyone else," Gavin Block said. "The unselfish player he is, he's going to find you if you're open."

Block was second on the team in points with 14, and tallied five rebounds and four assists. Doug Taylor didn't score a point, but had five blocks on the night, too.

"Dougie's blocks were a major factor, he's becoming a man in there defensively," Phillips said. "Nice to see our players have that kind of night, our fans get to enjoy that kind of night. Nice to feel good after a game."

James Gollon and Teyvion Kirk each added 13 points points of their own, meaning that five Bobcats finished in double figures on the night. 

Clearly, the night belonged to Dartis. But the entirety of the Bobcats roster owned the Zips, a welcome sight for a team that might have now turned a corner offensively. The Bobcats shot 54 percent from the field, the second game in a row the team shot above the 50 percent mark. 

"I would have been OK with anything right now," Phillips said. "Just get a win."

3. Groce returns

John Groce walked into the press conference room in The Convo and uttered "room hasn't changed."

It had been over five years since Groce entered The Convo, but he still felt the emotions when he entered the arena at the beginning of the day.

"Today when I came into shootaround, that was the first time I'd been in the building in about six years. That part was probably, for me, a little bit emotional," Groce said. "After that, it was trying to coach our team and getting our team ready to go. Brought back certainly a lot of great memories."

Groce coached Ohio from 2008 to 2012 and oversaw two NCAA Tournament appearances, one in 2010 and a Sweet 16 run in 2012. 

After the 2012 season, Groce left Athens to coach at Illinois, where he remained until last year. He was named the Akron head coach last April.

It was the first time that Groce saw the Sweet 16 banner hanging in the rafters.

@Andrew_Gillis70

ag07513@ohio.edu

Comments powered by Disqus