Mariah Modkins helped lead a strong effort by Kent State’s bench players with six points and four assists.
The Flashes checked almost all the boxes in their win over Central Michigan. Here’s the report card.
Kent State 75, Western Michigan 63
Score 70 points on offense: ACHIEVED with 74 points. Kent State 7-0 this season when scoring 70. In coach Todd Starkey’s four years, Flashes are 37-11. KSU’s 75 points were also 15 above Western’s defensive average.
Hold opponent under 70: ALSO ACHIEVED at 63 points. Flashes are 6-3 when doing that. Two losses were first two games of season.
Make 40% of shots: 32.4%. One of two categories KSU didn’t make the grade. Second half shooting was just 26%.
Hold opponent under 40%: 34.8%. Western’s shooting wasn’t much better. Flashes have held last six opponents under 40 after allowing six of first eight opponents to shoot better In six of those games, opponents shot better than 45%. ACHIEVED.
Outscore opponent by five on free throws: An overwhelming 24-9. KSU is 7-1 when achieving this. Flashes are 5-0 when making more foul shots than their opponents attempts, which they did Saturday. WMU was nine of 12. Kent State was 24 of 30. ACHIEVED.
Outscore opponent by five off of turnovers: 17-7 Kent State. Flashes had only 10 turnovers, one off their season best. Western, which went into the game with the fewest turnovers in the MAC, had 14. ACHIEVED.
Have 14 assists: Flashes had 11. But they did in on just 22 baskets. Flashes had averaged just 44.7 assists on baskets for the season and just 30.1% in its first two MAC games. SO CALL IT ALMOST ACHIEVED.
Get 10 points from the bench: 15, their third highest of the season against Division I opposition. Outscored 15-6, the first time all year Flashes’ bench has outscored opponents’ against Division I competition. (They outscored Division III Hiram 29-8.
BOTTOM LINE: If their numbers approach this in most games, Flashes could be back in contention.
Around the MAC and ‘golf’ standings
Akron, Toledo and Ohio won on the road. Losers were Buffalo, Bowling Green and Northern Illinois.
Ball State and Central Michigan (both 3-0) both used big fourth quarters to remain the league’s only unbeaten teams in the conference with home wins. Ball State outscored previously unbeaten Eastern Michigan 21-10 in the last period to win 59-54. Central beat Miami 76-70, using a 20-5 run early in the fourth quarter. Michaela Kelly scored 29 points for Central. She’s been MAC West player of the week for four straight weeks.
Akron outscored Bowling Green 14-0 in the last 2:29 to win on the road. Senior Haliegh Reinoehl matched a career-high with 26 points to go with 10 rebounds.
Ohio came back from its home loss to Central Michigan last week to beat Buffalo 76-65 in Buffalo. Erica Johnson, last year’s MAC freshman of the year, had 22 points, eight rebounds and four assists.
Toledo won its second straight game with a solid 63-51 win at Northern Illinois.
The “golf” standings concept is stolen from a regular on the Flash Fanatics bulletin board, who has done this for men’s basketball for several years.
It gives a team -1 for a road win (a “birdie”) and adds a point for a home loss (a “bogey.” A home win or road loss gets zero (“par”).
The golf standings
- Central Michigan (3-0, 10-4)
- Ball State (3-0, 11-4)
- Ohio (2-1, 9-5)
- Buffalo (1-2, 10-4)
- WMU (1-2, 9-5)
- EMU (1-2, 7-7)
- Toledo (2-1, 7-7)
- Kent State (1-2, 8-6)
- Akron (1-2, 8-6)
- Miami (1-2, 8-7)
- Northern Illinois (0-3, 4-10)
- Bowling Green (0-3, 7-8)
Ali Poole and The Knee
Senior Ali Poole, who has struggled with a knee injury all season, reinjured it Saturday when she dived for a loose ball in the second quarter. She had to be helped off the court and didn’t return, but she was walking on the sidelines later. Starkey said he hadn’t gotten a trainer’s report yet but thought she’d be back in action.
“I love the way that she went after that ball and didn’t try and protect herself,” Starkey said. “That’s fight. I appreciate that. We needed that play from her, and it contributed to our win without a doubt.
“Her knee is going to be that way throughout the season,” Starkey said. “She’s trying to strap that knee brace on and tough it out.”
Poole has started 33 games in her career and was the team’s fourth-leading scorer last season at 8.8 points a game.