Updated Thu, Nov 15, 2012 5:13 pm
Ohio impressed in its first game of the season, or at least the second half, defeating Portland 81-52 Saturday, Nov. 10. Looking forward, the Bobcats face North Carolina-Wilmington (1-1) Friday. The ‘Cats struggled in the first half against Portland due to first game jitters according to head coach Jim Christian. Ohio turned the game on its head outscoring the Pilots 48-19 in the second half.
Players to Watch
Keith Rendleman is a 6-foot-9 forward who makes his impact felt on the glass. Rendleman fouled out of UNC Wilmington’s win against UNC Asheville with 14 points and nine rebounds. He followed that with 14 points and 12 rebounds in a loss to Richmond. A senior, Rendleman has the ability to yank down boards and pour in points.
Adding to Rendleman’s efforts is Cedrick Williams, another 6-foot-9 forward. Williams has 19 points and 20 rebounds in two games, making for another force in the post Ohio’s undersized frontcourt must deal with.
Ohio has had trouble on the glass. The Bobcats struggle defending the post and finding position on the glass, even against smaller players. Portland’s Ryan Nicholas racked up 16 points and 11 rebounds in the opener, standing at 6-foot-7. One talented post player is difficult enough for Ohio to defend, but multiple could pose problems for the Bobcats’ frontcourt.
UNC Wilmington turned the ball over 39 times in just two games. Ohio finished last season tops in the Mid-American Conference in turnover margin and ended +11 in the Portland game. The Bobcats combat poor defensive rebounding by playing swarming turnover defense, which could be the case against a talented UNC Wilmington frontcourt.