Deshaun Thomas scored 21 points - missing nine straight shots at one point and making five in a row at another - to lead No. 7 Ohio State past Winthrop 65-55 on Tuesday night.
It was the last tune up for the Buckeyes (9-1) before Saturday's rematch with No. 9 Kansas. The Jayhawks beat them twice last year, once at Allen Fieldhouse and then in the Final Four.
Whether Ohio State was looking past Winthrop (4-5) and ahead to Kansas, or whether the Eagles just played well and the Buckeyes did not, the game was in doubt until Thomas got hot.
Lenzelle Smith Jr. added 14 points for the Buckeyes, who have won four in a row, all at home, since a 73-68 defeat at No. 2 Duke on Nov. 28 in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge - a game the Buckeyes led most of the way.
Thomas added nine rebounds and a career-high four assists.
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