ATHENS, Ohio - The Miami University women's basketball team had to battle down the stretch, but it came away with a gritty 66-61 victory over Ohio on Wednesday to finish the regular season. Courtney Osborn led the way with 21 points. Miami is now 18-11 overall and finishes 10-6 in the Mid-American Conference. The Bobcats fall to 6-22 overall and 1-15 in the MAC.
With the win, the RedHawks clinched the sixth seed in the MAC Tournament. Because both Ohio and Kent State finished at 1-15, a coin toss was required to determine who would be the 11th seed and who would be 12th. The Bobcats won the toss and will now face Miami on Saturday in a first-round game at Millett Hall. Tip time will be 2 p.m.
Miami relied on its two seniors to lead the way to victory. Osborn finished the contest 6-for-15, including hitting a three-pointer with 43 seconds to go to break a 59-59 tie. She also contributed six assists and three steals. Olowinski was a force inside the entire game, leading the team with 15 rebounds to go with eight points, four assists and four blocks.
The tone was set early when Osborn drained a three-pointer to get Miami on the board. Three-pointers from Hannah Robertson and Maddie McCallie helped push the advantage to seven at 15-8. Later, a pair of Osborn jumpers pushed a 17-13 'Hawks lead to 21-13 with 9:20 to go in the half.
The lead stayed between six and eight points for the next five minutes until a three-pointer by Haley Robertson gave Miami its largest advantage of the game at 30-21 with 4:16 to go. Ohio responded with a 10-0 run over the next two minutes to take the lead for the first time at 31-30.
Hannah Robertson immediately gave MU the lead back when she answered with a trey. The Bobcats would manage only one more free throw during the last two minutes to send the RedHawks into the break in front, 33-32.
Miami finished the first half shooting 44.8 percent (13-for-29), including 55.6 percent (5-for-9) from behind the arc. Osborn led the Red and White with 11 points in the period.
Hannah Robertson began the second with another three-pointer. Ohio would get hot and start to hit its mid-range baskets, but each time the Bobcats got close, the RedHawks answered with a big three-point shot. In front 43-40, a three-pointer by Osborn made it a six-point lead. After Ohio hit a jumper, McCallie nailed one from deep to make it 49-42 with 13:04 to go.
A pair of layups from Hannah McCue and Olowinski made it 53-45 at the 8:45 mark. The RedHawks shot went cold over the next five minutes as the Bobcats went on a 9-4 run to cut the deficit to only three points. A Haley Robertson jumper with 3:45 to go made it 59-54.
Three consecutive free throws from Ohio would make it a two-point contest. After a Miami miss, Shavon Robinson would go in for a layup to tie the score at 59-59 with 1:01 to go.
Haley Robertson found Osborn at the top of the key for the three-pointer that broke the tie with 43 seconds remaining. The Bobcats got a rebound put-back basket after a three-point miss to cut the deficit to one at 62-61 with 21 seconds to go. They fouled Courtney Larson immediately to extend the game, and the RedHawk sophomore calmly hit both of her free throws. Ohio missed its three-point attempt to tie with eight seconds to go and Osborn hit two more free throws to seal the 66-61 victory.
Miami finished the game shooting 41.5 percent (22-for-53) from the field. The RedHawks made 10-for-18 (55.6 percent) from behind the arc. It was the third time this season MU hit double-digit treys. Hannah Robertson finished with 14 points, while Haley Robertson and McCallie had nine and eight points respectively. Miami outrebounded Ohio, 38-29, for the contest.
Tickets for the MAC first round rematch against the Bobcats will be $7 for adults and $5 for youths under 18. A rate of $3 is available for groups of 10 or more through advance sales only. Contact the ticket office at 1-513-529-4295 for more information. Students from both Miami and Ohio can get in free with their student ID. The game will air live on Miami All-Access for those who have a subscription.