Story courtesy of BGSU Sports Information
Bowling Green 74, Western Kentucky 62
Bowling Green, Ohio - The Bowling Green State University men's basketball team recorded 10 blocked shots and eight steals to overcome an early deficit and top the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers, 74-62, in non-conference action on Monday night in the Stroh Center in Bowling Green, Ohio.
The win pushes Bowling Green to 3-4 on the season, while the Hilltoppers drop to 4-3 on the year with the loss.
The Falcons improve to 13-0 all-time at home in the Stroh Center when scoring at least 70 points.
The 10 team blocks are the most blocks in a single game by BGSU since the Falcons posted 10 blocks versus South Florida back on Dec. 21, 2012.
BGSU forward Spencer Parker led the way with a career-high 20 points, his seventh straight game with double digit points, as the sophomore was 5-of-7 from the field and 9-of-12 from the free throw line in 36 minutes of play. With his 20 point effort, Parker became the first player on the BGSU active roster to reach the 20 point mark in a single game as a Falcon.
Fellow forward Richaun Holmes poured in a career-high 18 points, as he also swatted away a season-high five blocked shots in the contest, one shy of his career-high. The five blocks was the most for a single BGSU player since Holmes himself totaled five swats versus Central Michigan on Jan. 9, 2013.
Senior Craig Sealey added 13 points, a season-high, off the bench for the Falcons, including 11 in the first half, while also hauling in eight rebounds in the win. Guards Anthony Henderson and Jehvon Clarke chipped in with 12 and nine points apiece, while freshman JD Tisdale dished out a career-high four assists for the game.
For Western Kentucky, guard T.J. Price tallied a game-high 24 points, on 7-of-23 shooting from the floor, while both Ben Lawson and George Fant had 11 points in the loss.
The Falcons got off to a slow start to open up the contest, as the Hilltoppers took a 9-0 lead out of the gates to force an early Bowling Green timeout at the 16:50 mark of the first half.
Out of the timeout, BGSU picked up an alley-oop pass from Clarke to Holmes to put the home team on the scoreboard.
The throw down jam by Holmes seemed to awaken the Falcons, as BGSU changed up its defense and put full court pressure on the Hilltoppers which slowed down the visitors and ignited the home team's offense, as the Falcons went on a 13-5 run to take its first lead of the game at 15-14 on a layup from Sealey with 10:46 to go in the opening half.
With free throws from Holmes and back-to-back layups from Parker and Clarke, BGSU extended its lead to nine at 23-14 with 7:33 on the scoreboard before the halftime break.
After the Hilltoppers battled back with a 10-3 run of its own to cut the Falcons' lead to two at 26-24, BGSU answered with a baskets from Sealey, Henderson and Josh Gomez to push its lead back out to eight at 32-24 with just over three minutes remaining in the half.
However, Western Kentucky answered with yet another run, this time a 10-2 surge to tie the score up at 34-34 with 1:01 to go in the first half on a three-point play from Fant.
BGSU finished the half out with back-to-back free throws from Parker to take a 36-34 halftime lead.
Unlike the first half, the Falcons came out with a sense of urgency to start the second half, as BGSU, led by Parker, began the half on a 15-0 run to take a 17 point lead at 51-34 just six minutes into the frame.
A driving layup by the Hilltoppers' Brandon Price at the 13:35 mark, ended Western Kentucky's scoring drought at just over seven minutes, as the Falcons soared out to a double digit lead over that span.
Five straight points over a minute stretch midway through the half by the Hilltoppers cut the Bowling Green lead to 10 at 55-45, yet free throws from the Falcons kept the lead in double digits for most of the contest.
Bowling Green, who was 21-of-27 (77.8 percent) from the free throw line in the second half, remained in control of the game for the final 10 minutes of play, as Parker, Henderson and Holmes all made key free throws to keep the home team out in front.
Western Kentucky was able to cut the BGSU lead to as low as nine on a three-pointer from Price late, however, Holmes made three of his final four free throws in the final minute to seal the 74-62 home win for the Falcons.
BG held Western Kentucky to just eight made field goals in the second half and to 34.4 percent shooting (21-of-61) overall for the contest.
The Falcons also held a huge advantage at the charity stripe, as BG was 29-of-42 (69 percent) compared to the Hilltoppers' 12-of-27 (44.4 percent).
Bowling Green (3-4) will return to the road to take on Xavier on Saturday afternoon, Dec. 7, at 2 p.m.