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Indianapolis, Ind.-- Through the 2005 Big Ten Tournament's first seven games, no lower-seeded team had managed to complete an upset. However, in Sunday's first semifinal match-up, the No. 1 seeded Ohio State Buckeyes (28-4, 14-2) lost to the No. 4 Minnesota Golden Gophers (24-6, 12-4) by the score of 66-63. The crowd was excited and emotional throughout this battle of Big Ten powerhouses. With two of the nation's elite post players facing off, Minnesota's Janel McCarville and Ohio State's Jessica Davenport did not disappoint.
The game marked Minnesota's first trip to the conference tournament's semifinals and the third time that the Buckeyes and Gophers have met in the Big Ten Tournament, with Ohio State winning both previous match-ups.
The opening five minutes of the contest saw consistent back-and-forth play on the offensive ends for both squads. Ohio State was charged with two early fouls, but Minnesota's Jaime Broback failed to convert on three consecutive free throws, which opened the door for the Bucks.
Broback earned her second foul, just seven minutes in and went to the bench for the next six minutes. With Broback out, Ohio State picked up the defensive pressure and caused three turnovers in the next two minutes, leading to three easy baskets. While she was out, the Buckeyes extended their lead to a then game-high seven points.
With 3:23 remaining in the first half, Davenport hit a leaner from the left block. With that basket, she became only the third Buckeye sophomore to score 1,000 points. Graduate-assistant coach Katie Smith was the last to accomplish the feat in the 1993-1994 season.
At halftime, Indianapolis native, Ohio State's Ashley Allen led all scorers with 11 points. Coming into the 2005 Big Ten Tournament, Allen had registered only two double-figure scoring games, a total matched in the post-season's first two contests. Allen also recorded three first half steals.
McCarville held the Gophers' high at half with 10 points and four boards.
With Broback returning to the floor, Minnesota closed the gap, but Ohio State led by three at the break, 30-27.
Less than two minutes into the second stanza, with the shot-clock down to three, Ohio State's Caity Matter launched a three-ball that failed to draw iron, but Davenport collected the airball and put it back up. The ball fell and Davenport drew a foul from McCarville. Davenport connected on the free-throw and converted the three-point play.
A minute later, McCarville took the ball across the lane and hit an eight-foot banker, despite being fouled by Buckeye Stephanie Blanton. McCarville converted as well, to give the Gophers their first lead of the game.
As the second half progressed, the play intensified. The physical nature of both teams led to even action in the first 10 minutes of the period, but on the strength of a few steals, OSU opened up a six-point lead at the 12:00 mark.
With the battling in the lane, Ohio State was the first to pay a steep price. With seven minutes remaining in regulation, the Bucks committed their 10th foul of the half, meaning that Minnesota would receive two shots for each foul for the duration of the game.
Down the stretch, true-freshman Marscilla Packer, who did not see any action in Ohio State's quarterfinal win over Wisconsin, hit two key buckets to reestablish the Buckeyes' six-point advantage. Packer finished with five points in the contest.
Trailing by two, Minnesota fed the ball inside to McCarville. After two dribbles with her back to the basket, the senior spun and hit the game tying shot with under 42 seconds remaining. McCarville finished the night with 21 points, 15 rebounds, and seven assists. The performance marked her 13th double-double of the year.
With time ticking down, Ohio State freshman Alice Jamen attempted an entry pass to Davenport, only to have McCarville step in front and cut it off. With ten seconds left, the Gophers pushed the ball up the floor. After McCarville was unable to create a good shot, April Calhoun put up a last second three, only to have Jamen block the shot as the horn sounded. At the end of two halves, the score was 56-56.
The game marked Foster's first overtime game as Ohio State's head coach.
A minute and 10 seconds into the extra period, Calhoun committed her fifth foul. She left the game with seven points.
Down one point, McCarville backed herself into the middle of the lane. Her first shot was blocked by Davenport, but after grabbing the block, McCarville put the ball in, to give Minnesota a 60-59.
With 12 seconds remaining and up a point, Minnesota's Kelly Roysland stepped to the line and hit two free-throws to extend the lead to three.
In the first 4:56 of overtime, McCarville shut-out Davenport, but with just 3.9 seconds and down three, Ohio State coach Jim Foster turned to his center to take the last-second three-pointer. The ball hit hard off the backboard and fell to the ground. Davenport finished the game with 12 points and 12 rebounds, her 12th double-double of the season.
Ohio State was paced by Brandie Hoskins' career-high, 23 points. Ashley Allen finished with 13 points.
Despite early foul trouble, Broback finished with a game-high 24 points.
With the win, Minnesota earned the tournament's first upset and the right to face the winner of the second semifinal between Michigan State and Penn State. The Gophers move on to the finals at 7:00 p.m. ET Monday night. Check back to BigTen.org for the latest news, scores, and stats from the 2005 Big Ten Women's Basketball Tournament.