A sentence from this NYT article sounds a bit stilted. Why is the preposition on used here rather than simply "scored points"? My understanding: A person/thing scores (intransitive, active) on a subject/topic.
And a match/game is scored (transitive, passive) on points. Namely the match/game's outcome is determined by points. But here it seems score is used actively to to refer to score points. What does score on points mean here and why is on used?
And this wouldn’t be a review of a boxing picture without a few clichés of its own. I wish I could say “Southpaw” was a knockout, or even a contender, that it went the distance or scored on points. But it’s strictly an undercard bout, displaying enough heart and skill to keep the paying customers from getting too restless.
"Win on points" and "beat someone on points" both make sense. It seems to me someone "wins on points" because they have "scored more points" than their opponent. In my understanding "on points" is always a general statement on a cumulative result. I am not sure "score on points" means the same as "win on points". There are only 54 Google hits of "scored on points", and almost all of them are in similar structures as "the contest is scored on points".