And then there were none.
The Ohio State Buckeyes, the last remaining Big Ten team in the 2011 NCAA Tournament and the top overall seed in the entire field, were sent packing by the Kentucky Wildcats on Friday night by a score of 62-60 in East Regional play in Newark, New Jersey.
This one went back and forth all night, and while the Buckeyes managed to open up a lead as big as seven in the first half, the teams went into halftime tied at 30. In the second half, neither team could open up a lead of more than four points, and the Wildcats took a 58-57 lead on two DeAndre Liggins free throws with 1:36 left to play. After a Jared Sullinger miss, Liggins hit a driving shot to put the Wildcats up 60-57. On the other end, Jon Diebler answered with a long three-pointer to tie things up at 60.
On Kentucky's next possession, freshman point guard Brandon Knight started at the top of the key, drove to his right, and hit a pull-up jumped with five seconds left to give Kentucky the lead, 62-60. Ohio State got the ball in bounds and pushed it downcourt, but William Buford's three-point attempt found nothing but iron, and the time ran out to give Kentucky the victory.
Josh Harrelson had a big night for the Wildcats, leading the team with 17 points and ten rebounds. Liggins chipped in with 15, and Knight scored nine, even though he had the two biggest points of the night.
For the Buckeyes, Jared Sullinger was again the leading force, as he led all scorers with 21 points and all rebounders with 16 caroms on the night. Diebler had 16 points, and David Lighty scored 12 in the loss for Ohio State.
The Buckeyes' season concludes with them having a 34-3 record. Congratulations to Thad Matta and the team on a successful 2010-11 season.