Ohio put on a show for 7,990 fans inside The Convo when it defeated Miami 91-78 on Tuesday night.
The Bobcats (22-4, 13-2 Mid-American Conference) played with a limited roster due to injury, but they recouped the loss with high-scoring games from Ben Vander Plas and Mark Sears, who ended the game with 30 points and 23 points respectively.
Here are a few quick reactions to Ohio's win over Miami:
Playing without a starter
The Bobcats were working shorthanded against the RedHawks. Jason Carter, one of Ohio's core starters, sat out Tuesday due to a lower leg injury. Carter is second on the team for points per game and is one of Ohio's most dependable shooters from the floor. Without him, the Bobcats had to adapt. Freshman I.J. Ezuma earned his first career start, and A.J. Clayton was also brought in off the bench to supplement for Carter's absence.
Although they fit his size, Ezuma and Clayton struggled to match Carter's production. The duo combined for just eight points in the first half, and neither made more than three field goal attempts.
Without Carter, Ohio missed much of its production in the paint. Ohio depended on shooting from beyond the arc as a result, which didn't begin to payoff until the second half.
Fighting for the lead
Whether it was still recovering from its recent three-game roadtrip or simply caught off-guard by Miami's hot start, Ohio fell a step behind in the first half. It trailed for almost 17 minutes, and it played catch up until Tommy Schmock knocked down a go-ahead 3-pointer late in the half. Ohio's lead didn't stick around long. Miami retook the lead 25 seconds later. A free throw from Vander Plas brought Ohio back to even keel, but a late turnover killed any chance at a go-ahead field goal.
The Bobcats found a rhythm on offense and knocked down consistent 3s after halftime, but they dragged in the first half and had to make up for lost time.
Ohio earned its second win over Miami this season, and its sixth-straight win in the "Battle of the Bricks" rivalry. It didn't blow out Miami like it did in mid-January, but Ohio picked up a solid win in The Convo despite missing a key starter.
The Bobcats went through the ringer after playing six games in two weeks and having just a day between games to recoup. Although it seems they're still reeling from a long stint on the road, the Bobcats rebounded in the second half and stomped the RedHawks.