December 05, 2014

Ohio State failed its first road test of the season after marching through an opening five-game home stretch. It will have an opportunity to regain some confidence against lesser competition before having to leave Columbus again.

The 14th-ranked Buckeyes begin a four-game stretch at Value City Arena when it faces Colgate on Saturday.

Ohio State (5-1) plays 13 of its first 15 at home and won those first five by an average of 30 points, with Shannon Scott leading the nation in assists at 10.4 per game through that stretch.

The Buckeyes couldn't overcome No. 5 Louisville's stifling defense on the road Tuesday, though, falling 64-55 in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. They shot 30.4 percent and Scott was held to one assist and 1-for-7 shooting.

Ohio State trimmed a 19-point deficit to 56-53 late, but couldn't complete the comeback.

"Every shot we took, there was never a bad shot," said guard D'Angelo Russell, who nearly matched his average with 17 points but went 6 of 20 from the floor. "We just couldn't knock them down. I feel like if we would have knocked them down, we would have won by 20."

Senior forward Sam Thompson scored seven points - more than four below his average - and was 4 of 10 from the free-throw line.

''We allowed the crowd to take us out of the game,'' Thompson said. ''We allowed the stage to take us out of the game. We weren't thinking like we need to think in a game like this. When that happens against a good team, you see what happens. We get down 20.''

The Buckeyes probably won't be threatened on this homestand, as they face High Point, Morehead State and North Carolina A&T following this matchup with Colgate (1-6).

The only game away from Columbus that Ohio State plays before traveling to Minnesota on Jan. 6 is a meeting with No. 12 North Carolina in Chicago on Dec. 20.

Colgate appears overmatched even though each of its defeats has come by seven or fewer points. It allowed a dunk off an inbounds play with six seconds remaining and fell 71-70 to Sacred Heart on Wednesday.

Ohio State routed Sacred Heart by 58 points Nov. 23.

Ethan Jacobs scored a season-high 20 and grabbed nine rebounds Wednesday for the Raiders, who committed a season-worst 19 turnovers. Damon Sherman-Newsome, Colgate's leader at 16.3 points per game, suffered an injury in the first half and didn't return after scoring six.

His status is uncertain.

"I take all of the blame. I didn't prepare our team well enough for the type of game we needed to be playing," coach Matt Langel told the school's official website. "We just didn't do a good job in any aspect of the game.

"We played poor defense, we didn't run good offense, we played way too much one-on-one basketball and it was just very uncharacteristic of the team that we are trying to be. And that responsibility lies on the head coach."

Ohio State, winner of 56 of 57 home games against nonconference opponents, hasn't faced Colgate since a 77-58 victory Dec. 6, 1980.

It's unclear if Buckeyes senior forward Anthony Lee will play after learning of his grandmother's death following Tuesday's contest.

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