Sueing leads Buckeyes past Texas Tech in Maui

LAHAINA, Hawaii (AP) — Justice Sueing couldn’t have asked for a much better homecoming, especially after sitting out most of last season with an injury.

The Honolulu native scored 23 of his career-best 33 points in the second half to help Ohio State defend No. 21 Texas Tech for an 80-73 win in the fifth-place game at Wednesday’s Maui Invitational.

Sueing scored 15 straight points for the Buckeyes in the last 10 minutes to hit back at the Red Raiders every time they threatened to make a run.

“It means a lot to me, especially because I was able to play in front of my family,” said Sueing, who played in the first two games last season before suffering a stomach injury. “In the last couple of games I’ve had a bit of trouble getting things back on track after an injury.”

Ohio State (5-1) shot 52 percent from the field, made all 18 free throws and never fell behind after the first two minutes while ending its visit to Maui with wins in two of three games.

“It’s a great tournament,” said Sueing. “It’s a challenge. That’s what we said at the beginning that we were going to get three really good games and that’s what we got.”

Texas Tech (4-2) earned a career-high 21 points from Daniel Batcho and 19 from Kevin Obanor.

The Buckeyes led 41-37 at the half and never let the Red Raiders get close, largely because of Sueing’s work.

“They have so many players to focus on that could bring 15, 20 points,” Texas Tech coach Mark Adams said. “Just a very, very explosive offense.”

Obanor made a close-range shot to pull Tech inside 62-58, but Sueing was fouled when he fired a 3-pointer on the Buckeyes’ next possession — and he made all three free throws.

After Jaylon Tyson hit a 3 from the wing, Sueing covered his own miss and was fouled to make the free throw 68-61.

Sueing hit a putback and dove after catching a long inbound pass to put Ohio State ahead 74-67 and end his personal 15-point streak.

Sueing also had eight rebounds and five assists, and Sean McNeil added 13 points for the Buckeyes.

Ohio State committed 10 turnovers against a tech defense that forced 31 total in their first two games in Hawaii.

Sueing had come into the game after making just 7 shots from 24 in his previous two games.

He was 12 of 19 against the Red Raiders.

“I wanted him to see some shots coming because he’s a better shot than he’s shot so far,” said Buckeyes coach Chris Holtmann, “and I think he needed that. He’s a much better shot, have that.” his numbers shown than what he showed.”


Texas Tech: The Red Raiders, who went 1-2 in Maui, had the defensive performance of the year as they held Louisville to 38 points on Tuesday. Their brand defense understandably faltered in their third game in three days.

Ohio State: Winning two out of three games in Maui bodes well for a team that has brought back three players and has 10 freshmen. Sueing, a transfer from California, picked the team up offensively after freshman Brice Sensabaugh, who averaged 17 points per game, had all 10 of his points in the first half.


Ohio State visits Duke for Wednesday’s ACC/Big Ten Challenge.

Texas Tech guard Kerwin Walton (24) tries to guard Ohio State forward Justice Sueing (14) during the second half of an NCAA collegiate basketball game Wednesday, November 23, 2022, in Lahaina, Hawaii . (AP Photo/Marco Garcia)

Ohio State forward Justice Sueing (14) makes a three-point shot over Texas Tech in the second half of an NCAA collegiate basketball game Wednesday, November 23, 2022 in Lahaina, Hawaii. (AP Photo/Marco Garcia)