Campbell shot 11-of-19 from the field and a perfect 5-for-5 from the charity stripe and finished with a team-high seven rebounds. He also posted two blocks and one steal in 30 minutes.
The Bobcats shot 42.2 percent (27-of-64) from . . .
Ohio held first-place Kent State to 38.6 percent (22-of-57) from the field -- including 33.3 percent (5-of-15) from three-point range. The Bobcats edged Kent State in the statistical battle with advantages in points in the paint (34-26), rebounds (39-38), points off turnovers (13-8) and assists (17-6).
"I thought we did a very good job of battling a very strong, tough team,” Ohio head coach Saul Phillips said. “To come up even on the boards was big. Obviously, Tony Campbell was unbelievable. I thought the last two games have been huge steps forward in the maturation of this team from a toughness stand point."
Redshirt sophomore guard Jaaron Simmons recorded a game-high eight assists while tallying nine points. He went 3-of-8 from the field and finished with five rebounds in 34 minutes.
Forward Kenny Kaminski shot 2-of-4 from three-point range and 4-for-4 from the free throw line to log 12 points -- including 10 in the first half.
The Flashes were led by Jimmy Hall. Playing in his first full game in Athens after seeing limited action in his return from mononucleosis a season ago, Hall put on a show for the Bobcat faithful with 23 points and a game-high 13 rebounds to go with two blocked shots. He had a double-double in the first half alone.
Redshirt junior guard Deon Edwin added 10 points to go along with four rebounds and a steal in 27 minutes for Kent State. Graduate guard Galal Cancer put in nine points while recording a team-high three steals, two assists, and two rebounds off the bench.
Campbell netted the first Ohio bucket to tie the game at 2-2 with 16:30 remaining in the first half when Simmons found Campbell underneath for an easy layup on the left block.
After its opening basket, Ohio settled in on both the offensive and defensive ends. The Bobcats spread the ball around as five different players accounted for the first 10 points. Ohio's defense also tightened up as it held Kent State to 1-of-10 shooting until the 10:40 mark in the first half.
The Bobcat defense flustered Kent State in the first half as the Golden Flashes turned the ball over 11 times. Ohio capitalized on the Flashes' errors, scoring 11 points off turnovers in the opening half.
"I think this was definitely our best defensive game,” Kaminski said. “The last time we played Kent, we struggled guarding the ball. I think we did a pretty good job of doing that tonight. I don't think this was our best offensive game even though we did score 72."
Ohio rode its stingy defense to a 30-23 halftime advantage. Seven different Bobcats found their way into the scoring column. Kaminski led all scorers with 10 points on 3-of-7 shooting.
"I just slowed a little bit,” Campbell said. “I feel like I was trying to move too fast in the first half. That led to missed lay-ups and people blocking my shots. So, I just slowed down."
The Bobcats remained hot from the field while not allowing Kent State to get in an offensive flow. Junior forward Wadly Mompremier personified both as he blocked an attempt at a layup by redshirt junior guard Kellon Thomas on one end and then raced down the floor finishing with a two-hand jam to make it 50-40.
The Golden Flashes refused to go away before seven-straight points from Setty extended the Ohio lead to 61-51 with 4:27 remaining.
The Bobcats went back to the well down the streetch, running the offense through Campbell. The former high school quarterback got the ball on almost every possession, and he produced -- including hitting the final basket of the game from five feet behind the arc to set a new career-high 28 points.
Ohio continues its three-game homestand against MAC East Division rival Akron on Tuesday in a televised 7 p.m. ET matchup on Time Warner Cable Sports Channel and ESPN3.
Kent State will be at Central Michigan Tuesday (7 p.m. ET)
(Courtesy of Ohio and KSU Athletic Depts)