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Buckeyes cruise in Big Ten opener

Published: Thursday, Jan. 3, 2013 12:19 a.m. CDT
Caption
(AP)
Ohio State's Amir Williams grabs a rebound against Nebraska's Ray Gallegos during Wednesday's game in Columbus, Ohio. The Buckeyes cruised to a 70-44 win.

Deshaun Thomas outscored Nebraska in the first half 18-17 and finished with 22 points to lead No. 8 Ohio State past the Cornhuskers 70-44 on Wednesday night in the Big Ten opener for both teams in Columbus, Ohio.

Lenzelle Smith Jr. added 17 points for Ohio State (11-2, 1-0), which won its 15th consecutive Big Ten home opener. The Buckeyes have a tough test on Saturday at No. 11 Illinois.

The Buckeyes led by at least 20 points for almost all of the second half.

How bad was it for the Cornhuskers (9-5, 0-1)? Only 8:27 remained when they finally exceeded the 31 points that their football counterparts scored in a 14-point loss to Georgia in the Capital One Bowl a day earlier.

Ray Gallegos had 14 points to lead Nebraska, which shot 29 percent from the field.

State roundup

No. 16 Creighton 79, Illinois St. 72: Creighton forward Ethan Wragge worked all week on his outside shooting. It showed when the junior scored a career-high 18 points on 6-of-9 shooting from 3-point range to lead the 16th-ranked Bluejays to a victory over Illinois State in Normal.

The 6-foot-7 Wragge, who normally comes off the bench, made his first four attempts from behind the 3-point line. After that, his teammates were kicking the ball out to him nearly every offensive series, looking for his hot hand.

Grant Gibbs added 16 points for Creighton (13-1, 2-0 Missouri Valley Conference), while the team's leading scoring Doug McDermott (third in the nation at 23.5 points per game) was held to 15 points and nine rebounds.

Tyler Brown and Bryant Allen each scored 15 points to lead the Redbirds (9-5, 0-2).

Illinois-Chicago 65, Youngstown St. 60: Gary Talton drilled a go-ahead 3-pointer with 17 seconds remaining and made three free throws to protect the lead as Illinois-Chicago defeated visiting Youngstown State.

Talton had 19 points and Hayden Humes 15 for the Flames (10-4, 1-0 Horizon League), who snapped a three-game losing streak.

W. Illinois 39, Savannah St. 35: Adam Link scored 10 points and Western Illinois slipped by Savannah State in Macomb, extending their winning streak to eight games.

Terell Parks had eight rebounds and blocked seven shots for the Leathernecks (11-3).

Bradley 66, S. Illinois 60: Walt Lemon Jr. scored 20 points Wednesday night to help Bradley to a victory over Southern Illinois in Carbondale.

Lemon's basket with 2:58 left gave the Braves (10-4, 2-0 Missouri Valley) the lead for good at 57-56. Lemon finished 8 for 11 from the field and also contributed five steals for Bradley, which was 0-9 on the road in the MVC last season. Dyricus Simms-Edwards and Jordan Prosser had 11 points apiece for the Braves.

Desmar Jackson led the Salukis (7-6, 0-2) with 15 points and nine rebounds. Jeff Early scored 11 and Anthony Beane Jr. added 10 points for SIU.

Seton Hall 73, DePaul 72: Fuquan Edwin converted the game-winning layup with 6.9 seconds remaining to give Seton Hall a win against DePaul in Rosemont.

Aaron Cosby led Seton Hall (12-2) with 24 points.

Jamee Crockett of DePaul missed a wide open 3-pointer with four seconds left to seal Seton Hall's win in the Big East conference opener for both teams.

Loyola 63, Valparaiso 54: Ben Averkamp scored 16 points and had four blocked shots as visiting Loyola of Chicago beat Valparaiso in the Horizon League opener for both schools.

Christian Thomas had 14 points and six rebounds, and Cully Payne had 13 points and seven assists for the Ramblers (10-3).

Ryan Broekhoff led Valparaiso (10-5) with 15 points and seven rebounds.

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