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Depth, scoring problem for Ohio in loss to Campbell

With Dartis out, Bobcats make just 4 3-pointers, shoot 36.5%

ATHENS – Short-handed Ohio struggled offensively and dropped a 63-55 decision to Campbell on Sunday at The Convo.

With Jordan Dartis sitting out sick, the Bobcats were just 4 of 20 from 3-point range and shot just 36.5% overall.

Jason Preston led Ohio (8-5) with 19 points, six rebounds and four assists, and Ben Vander Plas added 16 points and seven boards, but no one else on the team scored more than seven points and was a combined 9 of 29 shooting.

“We knew coming in that it was going to be a grind out, low possession kind of game," Ohio coach Jeff Boals said. "When you play a low possession game, you have to make shots.”

The Camels (9-3) got balanced scoring, with four players in double figures, led by Cedric Henderson’s 17 points. Trey Spencer had 12 points, and Cory Gensler and LaDarius Knight scored 10 points each.

Despite their offensive struggles, the Bobcats led 51-50 on two Vander Plas free throws with 3:14 remaining, but Campbell followed with nine straight points to put it away.

Jordan Whitfield’s free throws with 3:05 to go put the Camels back in front. On Ohio’s ensuing possession, Sylvester Ogbonda fouled out on an offensive call that wiped out a go-head 3-pointer by Vander Plas.

Henderson made one from the line with 2:15 left, and a possession later, Gensler’s basket made it a four-point game. A Henderson 3-pointer with 1:16 to go made it 58-51, and Whitfield added a free throw with less than a minute remaining.

“I thought our defense was good,” Boals said. “We just didn't make shots. I thought we got some good looks, especially in the first half."

Ohio has played all year without Connor Murrell and freshman Ben Roderick played only four games before he suffered another injury.

With Dartis also out, Ohio turned to freshman point guard Miles Brown to make his first start in only his third game back from injury. Having played only seven minutes in the last two games, he was forced into action and struggled offensively by missing his first nine shots before scoring on the game’s last possession for his only points in 25 minutes.

Freshman center Nolan Foster also returned from injury but only played four minutes. Freshman Lunden McDay was scoreless in 30 minutes, but one positive was that redshirt freshman Mason McMurray scored seven points and had five rebounds in 28 minutes.

Ogbonda had six points in nine rebounds but only played 22 minutes because of foul trouble. That led to 14 minutes for redshirt freshman Nate Springs, who scored five points and had two rebounds.

Campbell’s biggest first-half lead was 24-15 with 4:38 remaining, but Ohio followed with a 9-0 run to tie the game and trailed 27-24 at the break after Spencer beat the buzzer with a 3-pointer.

Neither team led by more than three in the second half until Campbell’s late run.

Ohio begins Mid-American Conference play by taking on Western Michigan at 4 p.m. Saturday in Kalamazoo, Michigan.

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