The Ohio State women’s basketball team, despite being the #1 seed and having clinched the Big Ten regular-season championship, suffered a shocking defeat at the hands of Maryland in their first game of the Big Ten tournament. The Terrapins emerged victorious with a final score of 82-61, marking an unexpected end to Ohio State’s conference tournament run before it even got started.

The game started promisingly for the Lady Buckeyes, who jumped out to an early 17-12 lead after the first quarter. However, their momentum quickly dissipated as Maryland dominated the second quarter, outscoring Ohio State 26-13 and securing a 38-30 advantage heading into halftime. Unfortunately, the Buckeyes couldn’t find their offensive rhythm, and the second half saw the Terrapins extending their lead, ultimately sealing the upset victory.

Reflecting on the game, Ohio State head coach Kevin McGuff acknowledged Maryland’s stellar performance.

“Maryland played a great game. They were really prepared. They played like a team that might have needed this to get in the tournament, and we played like a team that showed up as the No. 1 seed and everybody was just supposed to lie down.”

Kevin McGuff

Maryland’s balanced offensive attack proved to be a key factor in their success, with four players scoring in double figures, each contributing 15 or more points. On the other hand, Ohio State had four players in double figures as well, but unfortunately not at the same pace as their opponents.

Rebeka Mikulasikova led the scoring charge for the Buckeyes with 16 points, followed by Taylor Thierry with 13, Cotie McMahon contributing 12, and Jacy Sheldon finishing with 10 points. Despite their efforts, Ohio State couldn’t match the scoring efficiency displayed by a hungry Maryland team who was playing for their tournament life.

With this unexpected loss, Coach McGuff and his team must now regroup and await Selection Sunday to determine their seeding in the upcoming NCAA Tournament. The defeat serves as a reminder that, in postseason play, anything can happen, and no team can afford to underestimate their opponents, regardless of regular-season success.