Posted: 9:27 p.m. Friday, March 22, 2013
By Luke Zimmermann
Behind dual 20+ point scoring output performances from Deshaun Thomas and Sam Thompson, Ohio State shook off an early (and again just prior to the first half) defensive lull to look every bit the two seed that they are to advance in the 2013 NCAA Tournament. Iona looked ever bit the plucky underdog some had them pegged to be in the early goings before Ohio State asserted themselves appearing at times the best they have all-season en route to a comfortable win.
In addition to the 20+ points from Thomas and Thompson, Evan Ravenel contributed double digits scoring while Aaron Craft added a solid, balanced evening to help pace the Buckeyes. When all-intents-and-purposes Ohio State sixth man Shannon Scott was on the sideline,, the Buckeyes often failed to look the part. With Scott out, Iona rallied back to make things uncomfortable for the Bucks, and keep those that watched Harvard defeat New Mexico wondering about a potential "West Region curse". But with Scott's double digit assists back in the mix, Ohio State often resembled the Final Four team many experts have them pegged to be.
The Buckeyes next move on to face the winner of Friday night's 7 v. 10 showdown between Notre Dame/Iowa State on Sunday. With two seed Georgetown falling to mark the third two to bite the bullet in the last two years, Ohio State fans can thank their lucky stars that the Buckeyes came to play for 40 (well, at least 38). Under Thad Matta, Ohio State's only failed to win their opening tournament game one time.