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Ohio State stuns No. 2 Purdue behind 22 from Bruce Thornton



In a surprising turn of events, Ohio State stunned No. 2 Purdue with a 73-69 victory in Columbus, Ohio. Jamison Battle played a crucial role, scoring all 19 of his points in the second half. The win marked a successful debut for interim head coach Jake Diebler and secured the Buckeyes’ first victory over a top-five team since November 30, 2021, when they defeated then-No. 1 Duke.

The Buckeyes, now 15-11 (5-10 Big Ten), were led by Bruce Thornton, who contributed 22 points to the victory. Purdue (23-3, 12-3 Big Ten) saw Zach Edey score 22 points and grab 13 rebounds, while Lance Jones added 13 points.

Diebler took over from Chris Holtmann, who was dismissed after seven seasons as head coach. Ohio State, facing a second consecutive season without an NCAA Tournament appearance, has struggled in recent years, going 30-30 overall and 9-25 in conference play under Holtmann in the past two seasons.

Ohio State had a five-point lead at halftime and extended it to 50-38 with 13:55 remaining in the game after three consecutive 3-pointers by Battle. Despite Purdue’s efforts to claw back, Ohio State maintained control, and Battle’s key plays, including a mid-range jumper and crucial free throws, secured the upset victory.

The Buckeyes went on a 10-2 run to close the first half with Zach Edey on the bench due to foul trouble. Edey exited with six points, and Ohio State seized the lead for the first time at 29-28 with 3:07 left in the half. Purdue struggled in the closing moments, missing their last five shots, allowing the Buckeyes to score six unanswered points and take a 35-30 halftime lead.

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