Bearcats Fall to No. 4 Buckeyes

Dec. 16, 2006

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - Ohio State showed by it is the No. 4 team in the nation but the University of Cincinnati showed that it will get back to national prominence during the Buckeyes' 72-50 win over the Bearcats at the John Wooden Tradition.

UC didn't put its best foot forward in the first 20 minutes of the game and found itself staring at a 42-14 halftime deficit. That deficit grew to 35 points early in the second half before the Bearcats fought back to make the game respectable.

"I was disappointed with the way our team came out," stated UC head coach Mick Cronin. "We didn't show up with the same emotion that we have played with all year.

"They outplayed us in every facet of the game and they deserved to win," Cronin continued on OSU. They beat us in every area of the game."

The loss gives the Bearcats a 7-3 record at the 10-game mark of the season. Ohio State, No. 4 in both polls this week, improves to 9-1.

Freshman phenom Greg Oden led the Buckeye onslaught with 14 points and 11 rebounds. He also blocked five shots and his 7-foot-3 presence in the middle changed many others.

The Bearcats began as if they were going to make a game of it and trailed by four points, 16-12, at the midpoint of the half. UC failed to sink a basket down the final 9:44 and managed just two free throws.

John Williamson rallied the Bearcats in the latter half of the second period. The 6-6 junior from Columbus, who wanted to make a good showing for obvious reasons, finished with 17 points and a career-high 16 rebounds. Nine of his rebounds were on the offensive end.

Jamual Warren was the only other Bearcat to reach double figures. The 6-2 junior guard tallied 13 points.

Deonta Vaughn, who was returning to his hometown, had a season-low five points, snapping a streak of six double-figure games.

UC shot a season-low .260 from the field, and only .083 (2-of-24) from 3-point range. The lone Bearcat to make a three was Branden Miller, who dropped in two to finish with a career-high six points.

A telling tale of UC's offensive woes was that the Bearcats managed just five assists.

"I am disappointed in our lack of execution," stated Cronin. "That's why we ended up with so many 3s.

"We're young and we are in a teaching mode," the coach added. "We are doing things now for the future."