Wow. I hope you were watching this late-night, West coast trip by Kent State to Moraga, California. St. Mary's, with all the hope in the world of making the NCAAs, couldn't even close out a win at home to a MAC team. That's no bad loss, Gaels. This is what Kent State can do. They did it a couple years ago in the BracketBuster (when SMC was ranked, mind you), and they did it again.
The first half was a storyline of Kent State settling for a bunch of jump shots (and making more than their fair share), but hardly pounding it inside and they didn't take a single free throw. In the second half, SMC started to penetrate and wear down the guards, but Rodriquez Sherman, Michael Porrini and the rest of the Flashes started to break down that 10-point lead. Eventually they got it down to a single point and capitalized on a massively painful Gaels turnovers with 10 seconds to go. That set up Porrini with the final basket, and when his lane closed, he dished it to Justin Greene for the winning layup.
SMC had a remarkable chance to get the game-winning layup on the final inbound, but it rimmed out.
Porrini to the rescue again, then. He had 21 points (13 in the second half) to go with seven rebounds and four assists. And a big block, because why not.
Kent State will now play Fairfield, who also won their game the road, in the second round of the NIT. And the MAC is suddenly 3-0 in postseason tournaments. Tell me more about this "down year" we're having.