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At full strength, Ohio State runs away from Alabama A&M

Dec 29, 2022; Columbus, Ohio, USA; Alabama A&M Bulldogs guard Eric Lee (right) fights for the loose ball with Ohio State Buckeyes forward Justice Sueing (14) during the first half at Value City Arena. Mandatory Credit: Joseph Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

Brice Sensabaugh scored 21 points and Justice Sueing had 18 as Ohio State pulled away from Alabama A&M 90-59 Thursday in Columbus, Ohio.

The Buckeyes (9-3) led by three at the half but quickly took a 54-42 lead with the aid of a pair of 3-pointers by Sueing, who had just six points at the break.

Bruce Thornton added 12 points for the Buckeyes, who were 17 for 29 from the free-throw line (58.6 percent) compared to 5 of 7 (71.4 percent) for Alabama A&M.

Garrett Hicks had 11 points for the Bulldogs (4-9), who have lost three straight.

Sensabaugh scored nine of the Buckeyes’ first 13 points and had a game-high 11 by the half when Ohio State, despite making two field goals in the final 9:23, led 36-33 against the pesky Bulldogs.

Alabama A&M was down seven early to the Buckeyes but took its first lead 32-31 on Brandon Powell’s 3-pointer.

The Buckeyes had all 12 scholarship players available for the first time this season. Eugene Brown III made his season debut at the 11:22 mark of the first half after being out with a concussion suffered in the preseason.

Isaac Likekele returned from missing three games since Dec. 3 because of family matters in Texas. Coach Chris Holtmann said on his pregame radio show that because Likekele had not practiced in three weeks he would be used only in an emergency.

That time came with 1:03 left in the first half and the score tied at 33. Off a miss by the Bulldogs, Likekele fed Zed Key for a layup for a 35-33 with 39 seconds left and Sueing added a free throw 13 seconds later for the halftime margin.

Likekele and Brown each had two points.

The Bulldogs start Southwestern Athletic Conference play Monday by hosting Arkansas-Pine Bluff.

Ohio State, which defeated Rutgers 67-66 at the buzzer in its conference opener on Dec. 8, plays a Big Ten schedule the rest of the way, beginning Sunday at Northwestern.

–Field Level Media