Prahalis leads No. 5 Ohio State past Illinois - KMOV.com

Prahalis leads No. 5 Ohio State past Illinois

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Ohio State's Andrea Walker, right, shoots over Illinois' Karisma Penn during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game Thursday, Jan. 14, 2010, in Columbus, Ohio. Ohio State beat Illinois 72-61. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete) By Jay LaPrete Ohio State's Andrea Walker, right, shoots over Illinois' Karisma Penn during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game Thursday, Jan. 14, 2010, in Columbus, Ohio. Ohio State beat Illinois 72-61. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete) By Jay LaPrete
Illinois' Lacey Simpson, right shoots over Ohio State's Maria Moeller during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game Thursday, Jan. 14, 2010, in Columbus, Ohio. Ohio State beat Illinois 72-61. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete) By Jay LaPrete Illinois' Lacey Simpson, right shoots over Ohio State's Maria Moeller during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game Thursday, Jan. 14, 2010, in Columbus, Ohio. Ohio State beat Illinois 72-61. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete) By Jay LaPrete
Ohio State's Jantel Lavender, left, shoots over Illinois' Jenna Smith during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game Thursday, Jan. 14, 2010, in Columbus, Ohio. Ohio State beat Illinois 72-61. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete) By Jay LaPrete Ohio State's Jantel Lavender, left, shoots over Illinois' Jenna Smith during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game Thursday, Jan. 14, 2010, in Columbus, Ohio. Ohio State beat Illinois 72-61. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete) By Jay LaPrete
Ohio State's Samantha Prahalis, left, drives to the basket against Illinois' Adrienne Godbold during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game Thursday, Jan. 14, 2010, in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete) By Jay LaPrete Ohio State's Samantha Prahalis, left, drives to the basket against Illinois' Adrienne Godbold during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game Thursday, Jan. 14, 2010, in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete) By Jay LaPrete

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) -- Samantha Prahalis scored 24 points and Maria Moeller came off the bench to hit two critical 3-pointers, pushing No. 5 Ohio State past Illinois 72-61 on Thursday night.

Jantel Lavender, averaging 22 points, was limited to 12 for the Buckeyes (18-1, 6-0 Big Ten).

Karisma Penn scored 21 points, Whitney Toone 12 and Lydia McCully 10 for the Illini (11-5, 3-3).

The Illini's Jenna Smith, 12th in the nation in scoring at 20.5 points a game and 10th in rebounds with 11.4, played with a strained left hamstring. She finished with five points and seven rebounds.

Illinois trailed by 17 points in the first half but got as close as three on two occasions in the second half. Moeller's two 3-pointers helped the Buckeyes pull away.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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