By Jacob Keith | @JacobKeith55
Sports Capital Journalism Program
INDIANAPOLIS – Six points, 16 rebounds, and four blocks might seem like an absurd stat line to many basketball fans, but for Dorka Juhasz, it’s just another night of good, team basketball. Juhasz’ 3-for-11 shooting didn’t slow down the Ohio State Buckeyes as they beat Minnesota 77-56 in the second round of the Big Ten Women’s Basketball Tournament.
No. 6 Ohio State (19-11) advanced to a quarterfinal game against Big Ten player of the year Kathleen Doyle and the Iowa Hawkeyes. Ohio State’s last meeting with the third-seeded Hawkeyes was a 68-77 loss at Iowa City on January 23.
“I feel really confident, but we have to give them credit,” Juhasz said. “We just have to make sure the defense is on point and we need all the rest we can get.”
Minnesota (16-15) still presented problems for Juhasz and the Buckeyes. While Ohio State could play three people over six feet — Juhasz, Patty and freshman guard Kierstan Bell — Minnesota was able to match that for most of the game.
Juhasz, a first team All-Big Ten selection who led the Buckeyes with a 13.3 point per game average, had the fewest points of any Ohio State starter. Ohio State’s two leading scorers, freshman guard Jacy Sheldon and sophomore forward Aaliyah Patty, each scored 15 points. “We’re at our best when we have balance in our scoring,” said McGuff.
Juhasz’ rebounding was unmatched today. In the first quarter alone, she hauled in seven boards. By the end of the second, she had ten rebounds.
“She [Dorka] played really hard,” said coach Kevin McGuff. “I thought she was good defensively and grabbed some huge rebounds. She missed some shots she normally hits, but sometimes that’s just the way it goes.
“Obviously, this was a night I was not shooting well,” said Juhasz, Ohio State’s 6-4 sophomore from Hungary. “My teammates had my back, everybody contributed on offense today.”
“They [Minnesota] can play a couple of lineups,” McGuff said. “They can go a little smaller and stretch you out, or go a little bigger, we just wanted to guard them accordingly.”
Minnesota’s big lineup included 6-foot-2 senior forward Taiye Bello and 6-foot-2 freshman center Klarke Sconiers. This lineup is part of the reason to explain Juhasz’ poor shooting night. Bello had 10 rebounds, while Sconiers blocked three shots.
Minnesota hung around until the start of the fourth quarter when Ohio State went on a 14-0 run in the first six minutes. According to McGuff, “I think we just started making some shots. I think we were getting good looks throughout. We were just inconsistent.”