Ohio had an entire week to prepare for its rivalry matchup against Miami, and the extra time paid off. The Bobcats dominated the RedHawks on Saturday and left Millett Hall with an 84-70 blowout win.
Here are three takeaways from Ohio’s third-straight win in “The Battle of the Bricks.”
Ohio (16-7, 9-3 Mid-American Conference) had one of its best starts to a game this season. The Bobcats played confidently and were fearless with their shot selection.
It was for a good reason too; Ohio seemed like it couldn’t miss. The Bobcats shot 10-of-18 from the field and were 5-of-9 from 3-point range in the first quarter. Redshirt junior Katie Barker was Ohio’s best weapon, and she used screens set by sharpshooter Amani Burke to create space from beyond the arc. With the extra breathing room, Barker’s release looked as fluid as its been this season. Her nine first-quarter points were a crucial boost for the Bobcats early on.
No Hooks, no problem
The only Bobcat who had a bad start was Cece Hooks. With 5:38 remaining in the first quarter, Hooks was sent to the bench by coach Bob Boldon after picking up her second foul. In last Saturday’s win over Kent State, the Bobcats faltered after Hooks was sent to the bench early due to foul trouble.
That wasn’t the case Saturday. Barker, Erica Johnson and Burke picked up the slack in Hook’s absence. Miami paid more attention to Barker after a solid first quarter, but that only opened things up for Johnson. Johnson ran the offense like a general and, with the ball in her hands, the Bobcats easily found points. Her 17 first-half points were a major reason why Ohio entered halftime with a 19-point cushion.
Bobcats dominate the bricks
Miami had previously dominated Ohio in the 91st edition of “The Battle of the Bricks.” Miami had one four of the last six games and, despite Saturday’s blowout, still lead the series 57-35. Miami may own the past, but Ohio has dominated the present. The Bobcats won their third-straight game over the RedHawks and have beaten Miami by a combined 40 points in the last two meetings.