Florida 70, No. 16 Ohio St. 65

Associated Press  |  Last updated March 18, 2012
Ohio State coach Jim Foster took a few steps out onto the court with his arms folded while his players came over for a media timeout. The Buckeyes were down by 10 early, and suddenly their seeding was the least of Foster's troubles. Quick on the perimeter and relentless on the boards, Lanita Bartley, Jennifer George and the rest of the Florida Gators were a step ahead of Ohio State from the very start Sunday. George had 16 points and six rebounds, and Bartley added 15 points to lead ninth-seeded Florida to a 70-65 win over the eighth-seeded Buckeyes in the Des Moines Regional. ''We got quality shots,'' Foster said. ''We just had some very bad turnovers, some unforced turnovers and a couple of passes that just were thrown over a player's head. ... We shot ourselves in the foot a lot.'' The Gators scored the game's first nine points and held on in front of a crowd packed with fans of the in-state Buckeyes. Tayler Hill scored 23 points for Ohio State, including two late baskets to pull the Buckeyes (25-7) within two. Florida (20-12) patiently worked the ball inside to George, who went up strong to her left and scored with 45 seconds to play. Emilee Harmon missed at the other end for the Buckeyes. Ohio State star Samantha Prahalis went scoreless in the second half and finished with nine points. The Gators forced turnovers early and finished with 20 offensive rebounds, winning despite shooting only 35 percent from the field. Ohio State was playing in its 10th consecutive NCAA tournament, but this was the Buckeyes' worst seed in that span. They made no secret of their displeasure with the draw but did little to show they deserved any better. Seconds after the opening tip, Hill turned the ball over against a Florida trap, leading to an easy layup for Jaterra Bonds. The Gators led 7-0 before the Buckeyes even got a shot off, and it was 12-2 following a 3-pointer by Jordan Jones. Ohio State cut the lead to three but Florida pushed it back to double digits at 27-17 and eventually led by 13. ''It started with my turnover at the beginning of the game,'' Hill said. ''We came to play. I mean, we got the cards dealt. We were ready to play. It had nothing to do with our mindset because we had an eight seed.'' Florida, however, was ready to play as well. ''All week long we heard Ohio State this, Ohio State that, their guards average this, their post players do that,'' Jones said. ''I know Ohio State talked a lot about being disrespected, but we felt disrespected, too. I don't think anyone knew how good our defense was.'' Hill scored 12 points before halftime and Prahalis added nine, but Florida was able to limit their impact. At one point, Bartley turned her back to the rest of the play while shadowing Prahalis on the perimeter, denying the Ohio State star the ball. Prahalis did become the second Division I player to reach 2,000 points and 900 assists for her career, joining Courtney Vandersloot of Gonzaga. Florida led 39-31 at halftime and had an answer every time the Buckeyes began to assert themselves. Ohio State scored the first two baskets of the second half, but the Gators regrouped and went ahead 44-35 on a 3-pointer by Bartley. With the score 44-40, Bartley stole the ball from Amber Stokes after the Ohio State guard had come up with a defensive rebound. Bartley's layup made it a six-point game. After a mini-run by the Buckeyes made it 52-48, Ndidi Madu's 3-pointer started a 7-1 Florida run that pushed the lead to double digits. The Gators were making their first appearance in the tournament since 2009 but had three senior starters plus George, a 6-foot junior.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Five teams that may be interested in Blake Griffin this summer

Nigel Hayes slams New York ahead of Sweet 16 game at MSG

Report: Tony Romo ‘believes it’s Texans or retirement’

Clay Matthews Sr. passes away at 88

WWE’s Kane is inching toward running for mayor in Tennessee

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Jung Ho Kang denied visa for DUI, may miss 2017 MLB season

Jets not ready to say Josh McCown will be starter

Sens owner on Sidney Crosby: He’s 'a whiner' and should be suspended for Methot slash

Report: Griffin could be growing more open to leaving Clippers

Brandon Brooks accepts wedding invite from Eagles fan

Report: Josh Gordon expected to get reinstatement update in May

Best of Yardbarker: Did Team USA's victory save the World Baseball Classic?

The Rewind: George Mason's improbable run to the Final Four

Breaking down the Naismith Award race

Box Score 3/24: Waiting on West Virginia

Eat, Drink, Watch: Weekends are for upsets

The 'Once again, Barry Bonds is the best power hitter in San Francisco' quiz

With Team USA's victory, World Baseball Classic (finally) lived up to its potential

The NFL distraction playbook

Which Sweet 16 team should you be rooting for?

The Aesthetic: The world of player exclusive sneakers

Lingering issues for each 2016 MLB postseason team

Box Score 3/23: Team USA wins their first WBC title

All Sports News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Best of Yardbarker: Did Team USA's victory save the World Baseball Classic?

The Rewind: George Mason's improbable run to the Final Four

Breaking down the Naismith Award race

Eat, Drink, Watch: Weekends are for upsets

The 'Once again, Barry Bonds is the best power hitter in San Francisco' quiz

The NFL distraction playbook

With Team USA's victory the WBC (finally) lived up to its potential

The Aesthetic: The world of player exclusive sneakers

Which Sweet 16 team should you be rooting for?

NBA Referee Hotline Bling: Steph Curry pushes OKC's buttons

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker