COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Kam Williams scored a career-high 23 points, including 13 in a row for Ohio State in the first half, to lead the 12th-ranked Buckeyes to a 97-43 victory over High Point on Wednesday night.
D’Angelo Russell had 18 points, nine rebounds and five assists for the Buckeyes (7-1), who hit 35 of 56 shots from the field for 63 percent. Jae’Sean Tate scored 12, Shannon Scott added 11 points and seven assists, and Sam Thompson scored 10.
John Brown, averaging 19.6 points coming in, had 19 to lead High Point (6-3), from the Big South Conference.
Williams was the difference in the opening half for the Buckeyes, who led 43-24 at the break.
Williams came off the bench to score 13 points in just 6 minutes. He followed a 3-pointer in transition with another perimeter jumper, then took a pass from Scott and hit another 3. Williams scored inside and completed a three-point play, then was fouled and hit two free throws. He went back to the bench having personally outscored the Panthers 13-7.
After the Panthers got the first point of the second half, Ohio State scored on seven straight possessions to extend the lead to 59-27. Scott and Russell each had five points, and Tate added four during the spurt.
High Point: A fast start is a good thing. The Panthers won their fifth game of the season on Dec. 1 at North Carolina-Greensboro, 76-68. They won their fifth game last season on Jan. 15 on the way to a 16-15 record.
Ohio State: The Buckeyes were not a good shooting team in 2013-14. They went 25-10 but hit just 45 percent of their shots from the field and 32.4 percent behind the arc.
This season, after losing their top three scorers from the previous team, they’ve turned into marksmen. Through their first seven games, they were shooting 52 percent from the field and 41 percent on 3-pointers.
Sure, they’ve padded those numbers against some overmatched opponents, but they’ve also been more selective offensively and have scored more in transition. Amir Williams came in shooting 75 percent from the field (18 of 24), tops in the Big Ten, while Marc Loving was sixth in field-goal percentage at .587 and was No. 1 behind the arc (14 of 25, .560).
High Point: After playing before 13,012 at No. 12 Ohio State, the Panthers host Ferrum on Dec. 17 back on campus in High Point, North Carolina.
Ohio State: The Buckeyes host Morehead State on Saturday.
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