The Bobcats shot 45.2 percent (19-of-42) from the field while . . .
The Bobcats also overcame 15 turnovers while forcing the Tigers into just eight and also won despite being outscored in points in the paint (28-16), points off turnovers (20-9), second-chance points (24-6) and bench points (27-8). Ohio took advantage of its opportunities from the free throw line, shooting 71.1 percent (27-of-38).
Simmons went 5-of-7 from the field and 6-of-6 from the charity stripe. He also grabbed six rebounds in 40 minutes of work.
"That’s every point guard’s job, to run the offense. They’re pretty much the leader out there. It’s huge to have Jaaron. He’s a do-it-all guy.” said junior forward Antonio Campbell.
Campbell posted his third-straight double-double and fifth of the season with 13 points and a game-high 11 rebounds in 31 minutes. He also added two blocks and a steal while going 3-of-5 from the field and 7-of-9 from the free throw line.
Redshirt senior forward Treg Setty just missed a double-double with 13 points and nine rebounds in 32 minutes. He was 6-for-9 from the free throw line. Meanwhile, freshman guard Jordan Dartis hit two treys and went 4-for-4 from the charity stripe to finish with 12 points in 38 minutes.
Redshirt junior forward Kenny Kaminski (Medina, Ohio) added nine points, three rebounds, an assist and a steal in 32 minutes and junior forward Wadly Mompremier provided a defensive presence inside. He tallied a game-high three blocks in addition to three points, a rebound and a steal in nine minutes.
Redshirt sophomore guard Paris Collins scored 15 points off of a 6-of-13 shooting effort in 33 minutes off of the bench to lead Jackson State. He also grabbed a team-high eight rebounds and added two assists and a block.
Junior point guard Yettra Specks shot 4-of-8 from the field -- including 3-of-3 from three-point range -- to total 13 points for the Tigers. Freshman guard Troy Stancil scored 10 points in 23 minutes off of 4-of-9 attempts.
Two other JSU players approached double figures. Junior forward Janarius Middleton tallied nine points, a rebound and an assist in 15 minutes off of the bench. Junior guard Chace Franklin dished out a team-high four assists for Jackson State and also chipped in eight points and two steals in 37 minutes.
The Bobcats used five points apiece by Dartis and Simmons to build a 12-8 advantage with just over 12 minutes to play in the first half. However, the Tigers responded with a 13-2 run over the next three minutes to take a 21-14 lead.
"We had a lot of leaks springing in the dam there. We got them plugged up with toes and fingers and anything we could find," OU head coach Saul Phillips said.
Ohio evened the score at 21-all with just over seven minutes remaining in the first half thanks to a pair of free throws by Simmons, a layup by Campbell and a jumper by Setty, but Jackson State outscored the 'Cats by a 12-9 count over the final six-plus minutes of the first half to take a 33-30 advantage into the break.
The Bobcats opened the second half with a 14-6 run over the initial six minutes. A trey by Dartis knotted things up 33-all, and the rookie gave Ohio a 35-34 edge with a pair of free throws.
The Bobcats took advantage of a three by Kaminski, a pair of free throws by Campbell, a jumper by Simmons and a dunk by Mompremier to go back up by five at 44-39.
The Tigers responded with a dunk by Collins, a layup by Franklin and a layup by senior guard Raeford Worsham to cut Ohio's lead to 46-45 with just over 12 minutes left, but the Bobcats countered with a 5-1 spurt that was highlighted by a triple from Setty to go back up by five at 51-46 with 8:31 left.
Jackson State answered Ohio's challenge once again, as Specks knocked down a pair of freebies and Collins converted a conventional three-point game to knot the contest up at 51-all.
The Bobcats countered again, though, going on a 15-2 run over the ensuing five minutes to take their largest lead of the game. Campbell recorded five points during the run, Simmons added four, Kaminski drained a three and Setty converted a conventional three-point play to put the Bobcats up by 13 at 66-53 with 2:24 remaining.
The Tigers refused to go quietly, though, as Stancil made a jumper and a layup, Specks converted a layup and Franklin nailed a trey to make it a six-point affair at 68-62 with 41 seconds to play. Campbell and Kaminski both sank a pair of free throws, though, to put the game on ice and give Ohio a victory.
The Bobcats remain at home to host their second-straight Southwestern Athletic Conference opponent next Monday (Dec. 21), taking on Arkansas-Pine Bluff in a 7 p.m. ET contest
(Courtesy of OU Athletics)