COLUMBUS, Ohio, Dec. 27 (UPI) -- Robert Smith Jr. scored 17 points Friday and No. 3 Ohio State put on another smothering defensive effort to crush Louisiana-Monroe 71-31.
The Buckeyes came into the game ranked fifth nationally in scoring defense and produced its stingiest performance of the season to easily stay unbeaten.
Louisiana-Monroe made only seven field goals in the first half and was shut out for the first 9:20 of the second period. The Warhawks attempted a mere nine free throws and went 3-of-18 from 3-point range.
Ohio State advanced to 13-0 in its last non-conference game of the regular season. The Buckeyes, one of nine major college basketball teams with a perfect record, open Big Ten Conference play on New Year's Eve at Purdue.
LaQuinton Ross added 15 points and 10 rebounds for the Buckeyes while Amedeo Della Valle scored 14 points.
No one from the Warhawks (3-5) reached double figures in scoring with Jayon James delivering seven points.