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Ohio State Headed Home After Tournament Loss To Houston

Ohio State's Kaleb Wesson makes a 3-point basket as Houston's Chris Harris Jr., left, defends during the first half of a second round men's college basketball game in the NCAA Tournament Sunday, March 24, 2019, in Tulsa, Okla.
Jeff Roberson
/
AP
Ohio State's Kaleb Wesson makes a 3-point basket as Houston's Chris Harris Jr., left, defends during the first half of a second round men's college basketball game in the NCAA Tournament Sunday, March 24, 2019, in Tulsa, Okla.

Houston's fans chanted "Sweet 16" in the final minute of the Cougars' NCAA Tournament win over Ohio State Sunday evening.

The celebration was long overdue - 35 years, to be exact - since the Cougars have made this trip.

Corey Davis scored 21 points to help Houston defeat Ohio State 74-59 in a second-round Midwest Region game. It marked the Cougars' 33rd win of the season - breaking the record set by the 1983-84 team for the most wins in a season. That squad was the last to reach the Sweet 16 and advanced to the national final.

Galen Robinson added 13 points for Houston (33-3), which will face Kentucky.

C.J. Jackson scored 18 points and Kaleb Wesson added 15 for Ohio State (20-15).

For the Buckeyes, the loss marks the end of an up-and-down season marked by a hot start, a midseason five-game losing streak, and a three-game suspension of star forward Kaleb Wesson.

“They’re a really good team. All credit to Houston,” Ohio State head coach Chris Holtmann told reporters after the loss. “But man, I’m super, super proud. I’m just incredibly proud of this group.”

The season brought the second straight tournament for Holtmann and the Buckeyes, who missed the tournament the two seasons before Holtmann arrived.

Ohio State started off hot from 3-point range, hitting seven of its first 12. But Houston burned the Buckeyes in transition to go on a 14-6 run to close the half with a 39-31 lead.

There was a brief skirmish right after the end of the first half. Ohio State's Keyshawn Woods and Houston's DeJon Jarreau were issued technical fouls after the teams jawed at midcourt. Houston's Fabian White was held back by teammates and coaches.

A dunk by Chris Harris put the Cougars up 52-44 with just over 10 minutes remaining. A floater in the lane by Armoni Brooks pushed Houston's lead to nine and led to a timeout by Ohio State. A transition layup by Davis pushed the advantage to 11 and the Cougars maintained control for good.