Northwestern handles Ohio State, now 11-1 at home

Ryan Langborg scored all 14 of his points in the first half to help host Northwestern build a double-digit lead in an 83-58 rout of Ohio State in Evanston, Ill., on Saturday.

Boo Buie picked up the slack in the second half with 15 of his 19 points for the Wildcats (15-5, 6-3 Big Ten), who have won three of four. Nick Martinelli added 12 points.

Northwestern outscored the Buckeyes 42-28 in the second half.

Bruce Thornton scored 18 and Roddy Gayle Jr. 15 for the Buckeyes (13-7, 3-6 Big Ten). They have lost five of six after a four-game winning streak.

Any hope of Ohio State overcoming an 11-point halftime deficit evaporated when the Wildcats went on a 9-3 surge in the first four minutes for a 50-33 lead. It only got worse from there for the Buckeyes.

An 11-0 Wildcats run increased the margin to 66-39 with 10:12 left.

Northwestern is 11-1 at home, including 5-0 in Big Ten play.

The Buckeyes’ road woes continued. Since defeating Northwestern 73-57 on Jan. 1, 2023, they have lost 14 straight road (non-neutral site) games, all in conference play.

Hot-shooting Northwestern led 41-30 at the half behind 14 points by Langborg, who made 5 of 8 field goals, including 4 of 6 on 3-pointers.

The hosts shot 53.6 percent from the floor and were slightly better (53.8) from beyond the arc, where they hit 7 of 13.

The game was tight until a 7-0 run pushed the Wildcats’ lead to 20-12. Northwestern was able to stretch the lead to 12 twice in the opening half.

Gayle and Thornton each had nine points in the first half. Gayle had missed 17 straight 3-pointers entering the game until he connected on his first attempt with 6:48 left to pull the Buckeyes to within 23-20.

The schedule doesn’t get any easier for Ohio State, which hosts No. 10 Illinois on Tuesday. The Wildcats play at second-ranked Purdue on Wednesday. They upset the then-No. 1 Boilermakers 92-88 in overtime on Dec. 1.