LAS VEGAS — The first time No. 9 Ohio State met No. 14 Stanford, it wasn’t even close.
In the season-opener, it was the Buckeyes drubbing Stanford 85-64 on Nov. 10.
Though it prevailed, Ohio State didn’t have it as easy in round two against the Cardinal.
Kelsey Mitchell scored six of her game-high 37 points in overtime to lead Ohio State to a 94-82 victory over Stanford on Saturday night in the Play4Kay Shootout at the Mandalay Bay Events Center.
“It was definitely a different look from when we played them the first time,” said Mitchell, who was named MVP of the event. “I knew something would be different. They’re a great team with a great coach.”
Trailing by nine points after three quarters, the Buckeyes (7-1) outscored Stanford 27-18 in the fourth quarter to force overtime, and then went on a 13-0 run in the extra period to seal the win.
Asia Doss gave Ohio State its first lead of the contest when she knocked down a 3-pointer from the corner with 5:09 left in the game, then scored the Buckeyes’ first seven points in overtime.
“I shook her hand like 50 times after the game, and gave her like 50 hugs,” Mitchell said of Doss. “I was just so proud of how she took over the game. For her to see different spots on the floor and make plays, I’m grateful for her and I’m happy for her.”
Doss and Sierra Calhoun each finished with 15 points for the Buckeyes, while Linnae Harper added 12.
Alanna Smith led Stanford (4-3) with a career-high 33 points and 16 rebounds, while Anna Wilson scored 21.
Smith’s presence helped Stanford outrebound the Buckeyes 45-39, while the Cardinal also got significant contributions from its reserves, as its bench outscored Ohio State’s 27-5.
But it wasn’t enough, as the Buckeyes stymied the Cardinal down the stretch. Stanford missed its last six field goal attempts, and was held scoreless for the final 2:51 of overtime.
“We didn’t play very well early on, but give Stanford credit, I thought they played excellent and their defense was really good,” Ohio State coach Kevin McGuff said. “But as the game went on, we started to get back to moving the ball side-to-side, and when we did that and made the extra pass, we got great shots.
“When Asia took over at the point, she made great decisions, she had some huge baskets, and she made sure she got other people involved.”
The Cardinal held a 33-26 lead at halftime, as it established itself early behind Smith’s impressive inside play and the Wilson’s long-range game. The duo accounted for 22 of Stanford’s 33 points, as Smith had a double-double at the half with 10 points and 10 rebounds and Wilson hit 4 of 5 from beyond the 3-point line.
Stanford: Mitchell, who became the NCAA all-time leader for 3-pointers one night earlier, was kept in check by Stanford’s perimeter defense in the first half. The 5-foot-8 guard was 0 for 6 from the field — including 0 for 3 from 3-point range — but did go 6 for 7 from the free throw line. Mitchell didn’t get her first field goal of the game until the 8:49 mark of the third quarter. She didn’t hit her first 3-pointer until 9:54 of the fourth quarter.
Ohio State: No rest for the Buckeyes, as they continue the busiest portion of their season. They will have played nine of their 30 regular season games over the first three weeks of the campaign, including a date with No. 16 Duke next week.
Doss’ go-ahead 3-pointer in the fourth quarter fueled an 8-2 run that gave the Buckeyes the momentum they needed to climb back into the game and eventually force overtime.
BAD BOY BILL
Sitting courtside was former Detroit Piston Bill Laimbeer, scouting potential players for the WNBA Draft. The two-time NBA champion was named head coach and President of Basketball Operations of the Las Vegas WNBA team that will play in the Mandalay Bay Events Center. The San Antonio franchise announced it would move to Las Vegas in October.
Former Cardinal Lindy LaRocque, in her first season on the bench as an assistant under coach Tara Vanderveer, returned to her hometown, where she starred at Durango High School. Stanford appeared in the Final Four each season during her undergraduate career and advanced to the national title game in 2010.
Stanford travels to play San Francisco on Wednesday.
Ohio State gets four days off before traveling to play No. 16 Duke on Thursday, in a nationally televised game on ESPN 2.