Central Michigan squeaks past Miami in MAC quarterfinal game

Cleveland, OH — The Central Michigan Chippewas women’s basketball team defeated the Miami RedHawks with a score of 61-58 after a tough fought game by both teams in the MAC quarterfinals. Miami’s star player Lauren Dickerson struggled in the first half as she shot three for 14. Micaela Kelly thrived for the Chippewas in the first half and kept up the intensity as she led her team in scoring with nine points.

Kelly was the leading scorer for the Chippewas as she had 16 points on six of nine shooting, along with three rebounds and three assists. Dickerson led all scorers in the game with 21 points and she was the only player to play all 40 minutes of the game.

Collective team ball was the theme for the Chippewas, as it has been throughout the entire season. The Chippewas’ five starters all averaged double digit scoring throughout the season, and Miamis’ Dickerson was the only player to average double digit scoring, with 19.8 points per game.

Dickerson took command of her team but it wasn’t enough with her low field goal percentage and the strong offense presented by the Chippewas. Presley Hudson came on strong for the Chippewas in the second half and scored a total of  points in the game. The leading scorers Reyna Frost and Kelly dominated while both shooting over 50 percent in the game.

The Chippewas will play the winner of the Buffalo Bulls verses Western Michigan game and they will have a chance to win the women’s MAC Championship game on Saturday.

 

 

 

Kent State Holds On To Flash By Ball State

Game Two of the MAC Championship did not disappoint as the Kent State Golden Flashes squared off against the Ball State Cardinals. Trey Moses got off to a hot start for the Cardinals being a presence down low. But the Golden Flashes didn’t take long to find their groove as Adonis De La Rosa and Jaylin Avery seemed to be unstoppable down low. The two big men would combine for 23 points in the first half. It was a battle of lead changes until Kent State went up 21-14 with 8:26 left to go in the first half. Ball State’s spark came surprisingly off the bench and they would go on a 9 to 3 run. The Cardinals would finish the first half with 12 bench points to Kent State’s 3. Kent’s De La Rosa would go up for a rebound a hit the ground hard. He would come up limping and head to the locker room. The disappearance of Kent State’s big man would eventually lead to the halftime score being tied at 39-39.
The second half looked like it would be all Kent State at the start as Adonis De La Rosa returned and dominated down low. Jaylin Walker also had a huge game for the Flashes and was heating up in the second half. He would end up finishing the game with 19 points. Kevin Zabo, the other athletic guard for Kent State also showed up in a big way in the second half and would finish the game with 16 points. But like in the first half, Ball State would not go away and thanks to Tayler Persons, who finished with 19 points, and Tahjai Teague, who finished with 17 points, brought the Cardinals back in it. As the lead seemed to slip away for the Golden Flashes, Ball State would finally take the lead for the first time since the first half with 2:17 left in the game. The final two minutes were back and forth. Jalen Avery hit a clutch 2 to go up 74-71 and after a missed 3 by Ball State, Walker would hit a free throw and allow the Golden Flashes to ultimately seal the game. The final score of the contest would be Kent State 76, Ball State 73. Kent State’s starting lineup was very balanced with De La Rosa scoring 17, Avery scoring 16, Walker scoring 19, and Zabo with 16. Kent State will move on to play the #1 seeded Buffalo Bulls in the MAC Tournament Semifinals tomorrow

Top-Seeded Buffalo Advances to Semi-Finals

By: Deontae Shahid
The top-seeded Buffalo Bulls and eighth-seeded Central Michigan Chippewas faced off in the first quarterfinals game at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland. The Bulls were able to pull away at the end and won 89-74.
Bulls junior guard Jeremy Harris scored his season average of 15 points in the first half of the game and finished with 10 rebounds and a career high 27 points. Junior guard, CJ Massinburg, contributed18 points for the Bulls in the win.
The Chippewas were led by forward Cecil Williams’ 21 points. Kevin McKay provided a spark off the bench with 16 points.
The Bulls went into the half up by nine with a 47-38 lead. The Chippewas were able to pull within three, but the Bulls went on a 12-0 run with 2:17 left in the game.
The Bulls were able to outrebound the Chippewas 51-36 with 19 of those being offensive. The Bulls were also able to hold the Chippewas to 21.4 percent shooting from the three-point line.
Buffalo will play the winner of the Kent State and Ball State in the semifinals on Friday around 6:30 pm.

Kent State Wins 2017 Mens MAC Championship


The Kent State Golden Flashes defeated the Akron Zips to win the MAC Men’s Basketball Championship, 70-65. Kent State led for most of the game, but Akron came within striking distance on multiple occasions.

The Flashes got out to a quick 9-3 lead thanks to a quick 5 points from Jaylin Walker (#23), and another 4 from Jimmy Hall (#35). Kent state got into early foul trouble, with 5 fouls overall just 9 minutes into the game. De La Rosa (#1) accounted for 2 of those fouls. Akron played from behind for most of the first half, and it wasn’t until 3:30 remaining that the Zips took the lead. Josh Williams hit a clutch 3 bringing the fans back into the game with a score of 23-21. Kent state quickly answered with back to back field goals to retake the lead. Both teams traded shots in the last minute of the first half, heading into the locker rooms with a score of 27-24 Kent state.

Both teams shot under 45% from the field during the 1st half. Kent State lead Akron in points in the paint and 2nd chance opportunities. Akron’s bench made an impact, scoring 8 of the Zips 24 points. Neither team had much luck from the 3 point line, with both teams combining for 2 3-pointers in 13 attempts. MAC Player of the Year Isaiah Johnson led the Zips in the 1st half with 10 points, while Jaylin Walker and Jimmy Hall lead the Golden Flashes with 11 and 10 points respectively.

Kent State came out hot in the 2nd half, taking a 36-28 lead. Less than 2 minutes later, Akron narrowed the lead to 34-36. Jaylin Walker responded with only the 3rd 3 pointer of the game, with Kent State leading 39-34. Akron finally tied up the game again with 11:15 remaining in the second half. For the next few minutes, the lead changed 3 times, with neither team ever more than 2 points ahead of the other. With 4:24 remaining, Kent State had an 8 point lead thanks to an 10-0 run. The Flashes held unto their lead despite the Zips best efforts, who could only get within 3. Kent State won a hard-fought victory, 70-65. Isaiah Johnson and Jimond Ivey both finished with 24 points for the Zips.

A huge part of Kent State’s upset victory can be attributed to their 63.9% field goal completion percentage in the second half. Jaylin Walker finished with 30 points, 6 rebounds, and was voted MAC Tournament MVP. Jimmy Hall finished with 18 points and led both teams with 10 rebounds. They will move onto the NCAA Tournament, and the bracket will be released tomorrow.

Akron Head Coach Keith Dambrot gave Kent State credit for making so many big plays in the last 8 minutes, and congratulated Kent State Head Coach Rob Senderoff for turning their team into championship quality. Rob Senderoff accredited the win to their shooting percentage and also their low number of turnovers, only committing 6.

Here’s what Coach Dambrot had to say:

 

Toledo Wins 2017 Women’s MAC Championship Title

Cleveland, OH- The University of Toledo’s Women’s basketball team won in a tough matchup against Northern Illinois to be crowned the Mac tournament champions. The Rockets were lead by sophomore guard’s Mikaela Boyd and Olivia Cunningham. Boyd was named Mac Women’s MVP, finishing with a double-double with 27 points and 14 rebounds. Cunningham followed her up with 20 points of her own.

Both teams got out to a shaky start, ending the first quarter shooting under 33% with a score of 12(Toledo)-13(Northern Illinois). During the 2nd quarter with 8:36 remaining, Boyd took an elbow shot to the face, and was pretty shook up. Boyd then bounced back scoring the next four points for Toledo. It wasn’t until 3 minutes left in the 2nd quarter, where Toledo began to look like they were gonna pull away. Olivia Cunningham hit back to back 3 pointers making the score 30(UT)-23(NI). Northern Illinois rallied back before the end of the half making the score 30-30.

Three of Toledo’s starters (Harriott- 4, Santucci- 3, Monakana- 3), got into foul trouble with seven minutes in the 3rd, putting Northern Illinois in the bonus. After NI jumped to a 43-38 lead with 4 mins left. Toledo cut the lead ending the quarter 49(NI)- 48(UT). Both team’s traded shot-for-shot, with the score at 54-54 with 7:48 remaining on the clock. Toledo then went on a 12-2 run for the next 4 mins, sparked by freshman guard Mariella Santucci. Santucci forced two turnovers, and scored 6 straight points off of and-one plays. Toledo leading 72-62 with 1:48 remaining, a steal by Mikaela Boyd sealed the game.

This win qualifies Toledo for a spot into the NCAA Women’s tournament, their opponent remains unknown at this time. Below is a clip from the post-game press conference featuring; Head Coach Tricia Cullop, Janice Monakana, Olivia Cunningham, and Mikaela Boyd.