Ohio State Basketball vs. Illinois: Preview and prediction

Mar 24 2017 Lexington KY USA A view of the Ohio State Buckeyes logo on a pair of official game shorts in the semifinals of the Lexington Regional of the women's 2017 NCAA Tournament at Rupp Arena. Notre Dame won 99-76. Mandatory Credit Aaron Do

Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

Penn State is now 12-0, 8-0 in the Big Ten. "Everyone in the Ohio State lineup is really good". The crowd of 6,699 was the highest this season and is the 40th straight sellout in Rec Hall.

But the script flipped in the second period as OSU freshman Emma Maltais scored 15 seconds into the period to give the Buckeyes a 1-0 lead.

Nathan Tomasello began the scoring for the Buckeyes with a major decision win at 125 against Carson Kuhn. "We've got a whole five or six weeks left", McGuff said. "We're playing good enough to beat people, and yet we just completely (collapsed)". His win pulled Penn State to within three, 15-12. Although the unbeaten Luke Pletcher was heavily favored, Corey Keener pushed Pletcher to the final seconds. The Badgers cut the lead to eight (58-50) with 4:22 on the clock but a 6-0 Ohio State put the game out of reach.

The Buckeyes increased that lead to 10 after 141.

No. 6 ranked Nick Lee took on Ohio State's No. 11 ranked and Stanford transfer Joey McKenna in the first ranked bout of the night and Lee was able to manage a 3-2 lead at the end of the first period, but failed to capitalize late as the two were tied at 6-6.

There were so many memorable bouts and all of Penn State's stars - Zain Rutherford, Vincenzo Joseph, Mark Hall and Bo Nickal - delivered.

Before Saturday night, both Penn State and Ohio State had claims to No. 1 in the multiple ranking systems.

"I was just thinking that I need to get up and start getting some points on the board", Retherford said.

Pipher took on No. 5 Micah Jordan, who followed up Retherford's tech fall with one of his own, beating Pipher 24-9 and giving the Buckeyes the 15-5 lead heading into intermission. Retherford now has 116 career wins, 14th all-time at Penn State. Hall trailed Jordan 4-2 after the second period before scoring four unanswered points in the third period en route to the win.

The victory moves Penn State's dual meet win streak to 43, dating back to the 2014-15 season.

The 174-pound bout was a rematch of last year's NCAA final between Penn State's Mark Hall and Bo Jordan of the Buckeyes.

"It was one of the matches I had been visualizing specifically, so I was ready mentally (and) physically either way".

Cassar, who almost scored a first-period takedown, scored the only two takedowns of the bout, one in the second on a double-leg and one in the third after he emerged from a scramble.

Then, at 184, No. 1 Bo Nickal used three takedowns and a late turn to earn a 10-2 major decision over previously undefeated Myles Martin, 10-2.

Cassar and Rasheed are battling for the full-time starter's job at 197, and Cassar nearly surely cemented his place as the starter after upsetting reigning Big Ten champion and NCAA third place finisher at 197 Kollin Moore by 6-3 decision, extending Penn State's lead to 19-15.

It might be easy for Ohio State to look past IL to its game at Purdue and others down the line.

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