Akron showed us all year long when they were firing on all cylinders that they had the potential to compete with most teams in the NCAA. IPFW making their first postseason performance as a Division I school showed they possess that ability as well. Unfortunately for the Zips, the Mastodons were to much to handle.
Coming off of a disappointing collapse against the Western Michigan Broncos (Mac division champions) the Zips were out to prove a point against the Mastodons. What the Zips were not expecting was the Mastodons to come out prove a point of their own. Both teams shot the lights out in the first half. The Zips shot 18 of 27 (67%) from the field while the Mastodons shot 18 of 29 (62%) from the field, but shot an impressive 55% from beyond the arc. The teams also combined for 12 of 13 from the charity stripe.
The second half was much of the same as both teams continued to shoot the ball well. This game didn't feature much defense as we saw 19 lead changes. but once IPFW went on a 10-4 run just over halfway through the second half, they never looked back. They were able to bottle up Quincy Diggs, and Demetrius Treadwell over the final 8 minutes and nobody else was able to step up for the Akron. Once The Zips fell behind they completely forgot about Treadwell on the offensive end.
Treadwell lead the way for the Zips, and proved to be difficult for the Mastodons to defend. He was a perfect 5-5 in the first half and finished the game 11-12. His 25 points were a game high. He also added 5 rebounds. Diggs chipped in with 23 points, and 5 assists for the Zips. The bench also provided a nice spark as Nick Harney (12 points), and Pat Forsythe (8 points) lead the way off the bench.
Steve Forbes (17points) has lead the Mastodons all season long, but tonight he took a backseat to Luis Jacobo (23 points). Michael Kibiloski had 12 points, and Mo Evans also chipped in 15 points off the bench. The Mastodons came in with 3 players in the top 250 from beyond the arc (Jacobo, Evans, and Kibiloski) and they combined to go 10-15 from beyond the arc. Every time the Zips seemed to gain some steam the Mastodons would quickly put it to an end. Luckily IPFW never needed to rely on foul shooting as they finished the game at 68 percent but specifically shot only 4-12 from the line to end the game.
The loss for the Zips brings their season to an end with a final record of 21-13. Seniors Quincy Diggs, and Treadwell combined to shoot 19-27 (48 points) in their final game for Akron. The Zips will be able to build off of this as they re-shift their focus on winning the MAC conference championship next season, while IPFW will advance and square off with the Ohio Bobcats in the second round. Ohio will have its hands full if they can't limit the three pointers IPFW has the ability to make.