Courtesy of MAC Athletic Communications Departments
Bowling Green 71, Eastern Michigan 57
Akron 80, Ohio 56
Toledo 73, Ball State 61
Buffalo 63, Northern Illinois 52
BOWLING GREEN, Ohio - The Bowling Green State University women's basketball team began the second half with a 15-0 run, pulling away from visiting Eastern Michigan University Thursday night (Jan. 23). The Falcons downed the Eagles, 71-57, in Mid-American Conference action at the Stroh Center.
With the win, the Falcons are now 15-3 overall and 5-1 in MAC play. EMU drops to 12-5 and 2-4, respectively.
Senior Alexis Rogers had a game-high 24 points, and became the 26th player in BGSU history to reach the 1,000-point plateau for her career.
Junior Deborah Hoekstra scored 16 points off the bench, while senior Jillian Halfhill had 14 points for the Brown and Orange. Hoekstra scored 11-straight BGSU points during a span midway through the second half.
Janay Morton and Cha Sweeney had 18 points apiece for the Eagles.
Rogers made 7-of-10 shots from the field, including 1-of-2 from three-point range, and she hit all nine of her free-throw tries.
The Falcons never trailed, but the first half was close throughout. BGSU's biggest lead in the opening period was seven points, and the Brown and Orange led by five, 28-23, at the intermission.
Rogers scored on the opening possession of the second half, for the first two of 15-straight points for the home side. Rogers scored seven of the 15 points, and when redshirt sophomore Erica Donovan capped the run with a jumper at the 15:27 mark, the Falcons' lead was 20 points, at 43-23.
That lead grew as large as 25 points on a pair of Rogers free throws with just under nine minutes to go, and BG still led by 22 with under five minutes to go, before a late EMU run cut the final margin to 14.
BG shot 55.6 percent from the field in the second half, with that 10-of-18 performance including a 3-of-6 effort from three-point land after the intermission. After shooting just three free throws in the first half, the Falcons were 20-of-23 from the stripe (87.0%) in the second period.
Senior Jill Stein led the Falcons with 11 rebounds, but it was a team effort as the home team had a 43-31 advantage on the boards. Five players had at least five rebounds for the Brown and Orange, including Halfhill (eight), Rogers (seven), Donovan (six) and Hoekstra (five). Olivia Fouty led the Eagles with eight rebounds on the night.
The game was tied at 2-2 in the early going, but Rogers put back her own miss, and Donovan then assisted on three-straight BG baskets. Two of those passes found a wide-open Halfhill under the hoop, and Stein also was the beneficiary of a Donovan dime during that stretch. At the other end of the court, however, the Eagles got three-pointers from Morton and Sweeney, making it a 10-8 BG lead at the under-16 media timeout.
After a jumper by Stein gave the hosts a four-point lead, Morton canned a pair of jumpers. The freshman had nine of her team's first 12 points, and the game was tied at 12. But, after a BG miss, Rogers picked Fouty's pocket near midcourt and sailed in for a layup that gave the Falcons the lead for good.
That layup began a 7-0 run for the hosts, which included a driving layup by Halfhill at the 10:22 mark. That bucket broke a scoreless spell of 2:02, and it would be exactly two more minutes before the game's next basket. That hoop came from Hoekstra, who stepped outside the arc to take a pass from freshman Rachel Konieczki and hit the Falcons' first three-pointer of the night. BG led, 19-12, with 8:22 left in the half.
The Eagles chipped away at that lead, though, and got within two points after a 5-0 run. Morton scored the first three points, and Fouty's jumper at the 6:18 mark made it a 19-17 game. But, junior Jasmine Matthews curled around the top of the arc and hit a triple, and two tosses by sophomore Miriam Justinger gave the Falcons a 24-17 lead heading into the final media timeout of the period.
Eastern responded with the next four points but Hoekstra executed a nifty shot fake in three-point land, drove toward the baseline and whipped a pass underneath the hoop to Halfhill for a short left-side jumper and a 26-21 lead. The teams traded buckets, with Desyree Thomas scoring for the visitors and Hoekstra finding Rogers for a layup for the Falcons.
After the teams exchanged turnovers in the final 10 seconds of the half, a halfcourt shot from Hoekstra hit the rim and bounced away as the horn sounded. The Falcons shot an even 40 percent in that opening period, while holding the Eagles to a 33.3% success rate.
Rogers, as mentioned, scored the first five points of the second period, with her three-pointer from the top of the arc giving the Falcons the first double-digit lead of the night and prompting a quick EMU timeout. Halfhill scored on back-to-back possessions, though, and Rogers and Stein each hit two free throws before Donovan's left-side jumper made it a 20-point game with 15:27 to go.
BG began the second half by making 5-of-7 shots from the floor, and the Falcon defense forced Eastern to go 0-of-9 from the field to start the half.
EMU's first hoop of the period, which came with 15:07 left, was an off-balance jumper by Jamaica Bucknor that bounced around the rim, caromed off the backboard and finally fell through the net. Hoekstra, however, wandered out to the corner to take a Matthews pass and knock down another of her game-high three triples. Then, on the next BG possession, the junior hit two free throws. After Sweeney struck from three-point range, Hoekstra answered with another three-ball, again from the left side.
A Thomas three began a 4-0 mini-run for the Eagles, but Hoekstra got back to the line twice within a 41-second span, going 3-of-4 from the stripe. Her last of those tosses gave her 11 consecutive BG points, and the Falcons had a 54-32 lead.
After a Sweeney layup, five-straight points by Rogers gave BG a game-high 25-point lead. The senior drew the fourth foul on Thomas en route to a three-point play with 9:22 to go, and she drove and was fouled by Fouty just 27 seconds later, hitting both tosses for a 59-34 advantage.
EMU got a pair of hoops from Natachia Watkins, but Rogers hit two ore free throws out of the under-eight-minute timeout, and with 7:08 left in the game, she blew past her would-be defender for a driving layup and points number 999 and 1,000 in her BGSU career. The lead was 22 points, and after Rogers hit two more tosses from the line with 5:30 on the clock, she checked out of the game for good.
Rogers had her 24 points in 30 minutes of action, and she has scored 1,002 points in 83 games in her BGSU career.
Sweeney scored 10 of her team's last 16 points, helping EMU trim that 22-point deficit down to 14, but it was too little, too late as the Falcons won for the seventh time in as many home games this season.
Freshman Leah Bolton checked into the game with 1:39 to go. Bolton, who has been slowed by injuries this season, played in just her second game for the Falcons, and her first-ever home contest.
BGSU shot 45.8% from the field for the game, while holding EMU to a 35.5% rate. Rogers' 9-for-9 effort from the free-throw line led the way as the Falcons went 22-of-26 (84.6%) on the night. BG made three more free throws than EMU attempted, as the Eagles were 9-of-19 from the stripe.
The Falcons are home again on Sunday (Jan. 26), facing Northern Illinois University in a 2:07 p.m. start at the Stroh Center. That game, part of the MAC's television package, is scheduled to be aired by Time Warner Cable SportsChannel, as well as ESPN3 and WatchESPN.
AKRON, Ohio -- Akron's strong defensive effort and a career-high 16-point performance from freshman Hannah Plybon helped the Zips to an 80-56 victory over Ohio Thursday night at James A. Rhodes Arena.
UA packed in its zone defense and saw success for the second-straight game, improving to 9-8 overall and 3-3 in the Mid-American Conference. The Zips held Ohio, a team that entered the contest making eight 3-point field goals per game, to just 2-of-24 from long range.
Plybon's personal-best 16 points came on a 7-of-11 showing from the field, to go along with four rebounds. Hanna Luburgh poured in a game-high 28 points as she shot 55 percent from the field.
Rachel Tecca was the third Zip to score in double figures and ended the night just shy of a double-double with 13 points and nine boards, also posting three blocks.
As a team, Akron dished out 21 assists, led by Megan Barilla who dropped five dimes without a turnover in just seven minutes of play.
Ohio (8-9, 3-3 MAC) was led by 14 points from Kat Yelle and a double-double from Quiera Lampkins (13 points, 11 rebounds).
The Zips came firing right out of the gate, starting the game on a 9-0 run and keeping the Bobcats scoreless until the 15:27 mark when Yelle hit Ohio's first field goal.
Ohio slowly closed the gap to come within five points with the score at 14-9 in UA's favor and 12:23 left in the first half. A pair of free throws from Luburgh pushed Akron's lead to double digits at 22-11, but it would be her jumper at the 7:05 mark that sparked a 9-2 run for the Zips, including seven unanswered points.
Akron maintained separation to carry a 36-21 lead into the halftime break and was able to carry that momentum into the second period.
UA picked up right where it left off, sprinting ahead on the heels of a 12-3 run that was capped by a Plybon put-back to take a 48-24 lead less than four minutes into the half. The Zips held their composure and stayed on top, never trailing and leading Ohio by as many as 26 points on a layup from Alex Ricketts in the final minutes.
The Zips held the Bobcats to 23.4 percent shooting from the floor and just 15 field goals for the game – a season low for Akron's opponents this year in MAC play. Although the rebounding battle was tied at 43, Akron out-scored Ohio in the paint, 32-26, and converted 16 points off Bobcat turnovers.
UA returns to the court on Sunday, Jan. 26, when it travels to Eastern Michigan. Tip-off between the Zips and the Eagles is set for 2 p.m. at EMU's Convocation Center.
TOLEDO, OH – Toledo put together a solid all-around effort and secured a 73-61 victory over Ball State on Thursday before 3,602 fans in Savage Arena. With the victory, UT improves to 8-9 overall, 3-3 in the Mid-American Conference.
The Rockets took advantage of some good old home cooking and claimed their ninth straight triumph against the Cardinals (8-9, 3-3 MAC) and in the process ended a mini two-game losing skid. The four-time reigning MAC West Division champions have now won 40 of their last 43 league contests at home under head coach Tricia Cullop.
Toledo shot a respectable 42.4 percent (25-of-59) from the field, including 37.5 percent (6-of-16) from beyond the arc, and 81.0 percent (17-of-21) from the charity stripe to avoid its first three-game conference losing skid since 2007-08.
The Midnight Blue & Gold did all this against one of the best defensive squads in the MAC. BSU entered tonight’s division showdown ranked second in league games in three-point field goal percentage defense (25.7%) and third in both scoring defense (63.8 ppg) and overall field goal percentage defense (38.1%).
UT also controlled the boards and finished with a decisive 40-29 edge, pulling down a whopping 19 offensive rebounds. Toledo turned those offensive caroms into 17 second-chance points and also recorded 17 assists, compared to 14 turnovers to mark the eighth time (6-2 record) they totaled more helpers than miscues in 2013-14.
Junior Inma Zanoguera led the victors with 16 points, a team-tying best seven caroms and a squad-tying high four helpers. Zanoguera shot an efficient 6-of-9 from the floor and a perfect 4-of-4 from the free throw line in 39 minutes to score in double digits for a team-best 14th time this season.
Joining Zanoguera in double figures were junior Andola Dortch with 15 points, a team-tying best four dimes and two steals and sophomore Ana Capotosto had 14 points, five caroms and two thefts. Capotosto was clutch on the perimeter for the home team, equaling her career high with a contest-best four three-point field goals.
UT also received outstanding efforts from senior Brianna Jones (8 pts., team-tying best 7 rebs., 2 asts.), freshman Elena de Alfredo (8 pts., 2 asts.) and sophomore Janice Monakana (6 pts., squad-tying high 7 rebs.) to surpass 70 points for a 10th time this season.
2012-13 second-team All-MAC selection Nathalie Fontaine paced the Cardinals with a game-high 17 points and six rebounds, followed by Brandy Woody and Brittany Carter with 15 and 13 points, respectively.
BSU entered tonight’s matchup leading the league in three-point field goal percentage (38.8%), but the visitors were held to only 23.5 percent (4-of-17) by a stout UT defense.
After spotting BSU the opening field goal, Toledo reeled off nine straight points and never looked back. Capotosto scored the first five points to get the momentum started, while Zanoguera accounted for the other four to prompt the Cardinals into an early stoppage of play at the 15:59 mark.
The Rockets stayed red hot shooting the ball as the first half wore on, taking advantage of a deep triple by De Alfredo with the shot clock expiring to make the score 20-10 at 8:14.
UT continued to push the action in the waning moments of the opening stanza, utilizing three consecutive layups from Zanoguera, Monakana and Jones to assume a 35-21 lead at the intermission.
Toledo shot 45.5 percent (15-of-33) from the field in the first half, compared to Ball State’s 27.8 percent (5-of-18) to help the home team build a comfortable 14-point bulge. UT was credited with nine assists on its 15 field goals and posted a decisive 16-6 edge in points in the paint.
UT’s Dortch ignited a strong start to the second half with six quick points to extend the margin to 46-32 with 11:47 left in regulation.
Toledo's Capotosto then buried her third trey of the evening to increase the difference to a game-high 17 points, 49-32, at the 10:10 mark.
A little over five minutes later, Capotosto drained yet another three-point field goal to equal her career high and in the process took the wind out of the Cardinals’ sails. The closest BSU would get the rest of the contest was eight points on three occasions.
Toledo will look to build off tonight’s impressive victory with it travels to MAC East Division foe Ohio on Sunday, Jan. 26. Tip-off is slated for 2:00 p.m. in the Convocation Center.
DeKALB, Ill. - After a solid opening half and a promising start to the second, the Northern Illinois women's basketball team (7-9, 3-3 MAC) could not continue its rhythm as Buffalo (10-7, 3-3 MAC) defeated the Huskies, 63-52. Junior Jenna Thorp (Hinckley, Ill./Hinckley-Big Rock) recorded her first career double-double as she she scored 12 points and grabbed 11 rebounds. NIU and UB combined for a field goal percentage of .318.
"I thought in the first half and in the start of the second half we played really well and we had great looks but we couldn't finish in the second and that started to effect us at the other end of the floor," said Head Coach Kathi Bennett during the post game interview. "Jenna played extremely hard tonight and did everything in her power to try and help us win, grabbing five boards on the offensive glass. I just wish we would have finished shots to take advantage of those opportunities."
With Buffalo’s length an advantage on the tale of the tape, Thorp embraced the challenge as she was the games leading scorer and rebounder at halftime with eight points and six boards.
On her final rebound of the half, Thorp ran after a missed three-point shot by Alexis Lindstrom (Howards Grove, Wis./Howards Grove), that caromed straight off the rim and darted to the sideline. The Hinckley, Ill. native dove for the loose and threw herself to the floor and into the operations tables to tip the ball to Lindstrom, invigorating the NIU bench and crowd at the Convocation Center.
The energy would give the Huskies the final points of the half on a Natecia Augusta (Peoria, Ill./Limestone) layup that put NIU back within one point heading into the locker room, 24-23. The Bulls finished the half with four blocks and six in the game.
Northern Illinois jumped out of the gate in the second half and went on a 6-2 run to take a 29-26 lead in the period. Buffalo slowly began to chip away at the Huskies lead and eventually overtook NIU with 13:58 left in the half. While the Northern Illinois defense forced the Bulls to take bad shots and grabbed rebounds on the defensive glass to end those threats, it was unable to convert the baskets it needed to retake the lead on the offensive side of the floor.
Freshman Jazmine Harris (West Allis, Wis./Heritage Christian) brought the Huskies back within five with 8:18 left, 40-35, but the Bulls would charge and build their lead to 18. NIU went down swinging in the final minutes of the game as it finished the contest on an 11-4 run as Lindstrom hit two big shots from behind the arc to aid the Huskies late comeback effort.
Northern Illinois was almost perfect at the free throw line, finishing 14-for-15 at the charity stripe. Augusta was a perfect 6-for-6, followed closely by Ally Lehman's (Nineveh, Ind/Indian Creek) 4-for-4 performance. Danny Pulliam (Indianapolis, Ind./Pike) was 2-for-2 from the line as well. The Bulls finished 20-of-27 from the free throw line. Augusta finished with eight points and four rebounds, followed by Lehman's six point, six rebound night.
The Huskies will return to action Sunday, January 26 at 1 p.m. Central when they take on Bowling Green at the Stroh Center. The game will be televised live on Time Warner Cable Sports, BCSN, ESPN3 and ESPN Full Court Package, and tape delayed in the Chicagoland area on Comcast Chicago at 3 p.m. Central.