Bates-Diop leads Ohio State men’s basketball to 82-72 win over Radford

Ohio State forward Keita Bates-Diop, right, goes up for a shot against Radford forward Ed Polite, Jr. during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in Columbus, Ohio, Sunday, Nov. 12, 2017. (AP Photo/Paul Vernon)

COLUMBUS (AP) — Keita Bates-Diop had his second strong performance on his path to injury recovery with 22 points and 10 rebounds when Ohio State defeated Radford 82-72 on Sunday.

C.J. Jackson added 19 points and Jae’Sean Tate had 13 points and 10 rebounds for the Buckeyes (2-0), who led 44-34 at the half. OSU was up by 26 in the second half before Radford had a late flurry.

Carlik Jones led Radford (1-1) with 19 points and Randy Phillips scored 12.

Bates-Diop, who missed all but nine games last season with a stress fracture in his left leg had 19 points and 11 rebounds in the season-opening 95-64 win over Robert Morris on Friday.

Ohio State led 44-34 at the half but the Highlanders presented problems with their press although they failed to take advantage in the first half.

BIG PICTURE:

Radford in its opener Friday vs. Georgia Southwestern trailed by two at halftime but started the second half on a 21-5 run that led to a 72-63 win. The Highlanders had the role reversed against the Buckeyes by being outscored 17-1 in the first 6 ½ minutes after the break

Ohio State continues to take nurturing steps under Chris Holtmann in his first season as coach. The Buckeyes are learning his system and opening with two winnable opponents helps in the transition.

UP NEXT:

Radford is on the road vs. East Carolina on Wednesday for the second of three consecutive away games.

Ohio State plays the third of four straight home games when it hosts Texas Southern on Thursday.

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