A 13 point lead with under 12 minutes to go was not enough for Kent State (11-9, 2-5 MAC) Wednesday night as the Flashes laid an egg in the closing moments yet again, falling to Northern Illinois (8-11, 2-5 MAC) 50-49 for the Huskies first win in Kent since 2003.
Since beating NIU in overtime on Jan. 15, neither team had won a game entering tonight. Both were struggling to shoot the ball and just couldn't find consistency on offense. But, something seemed different tonight as Kent State came out with a different starting lineup and seemed to be playing with some extra urgency on defense. The Huskies seemed lethargic, as the Golden Flashes took a seven point lead into halftime.
In the second half, the Flashes came out aggressive and extended their lead to 14. The Huskies however would answer with under 12 minutes to go with a 10-point run sparked by Askel Bolin's three pointer. With 3:16 to go, Darrell Bowie hit the go ahead layup for the Huskies to give them their first lead of the game. The Flashes were up one with under nine seconds to go when the Huskies ran the floor and got a foul call underneath. Two Travon Baker free throws were all she wrote as the Huskies would win by one.
Bolin led the Huskies with 14 points. Jordan Threloff added ten points and eight rebounds. The Huskies shot 34 percent from the field and 23 percent from three point land, but converted on 15 of 17 free throws.
Kent State was led by Darren Goodson with ten points. Mark Henniger added eight points and six rebounds. The Flashes shot the ball very poorly once again at 35 percent and missed 13 three pointers, in what has been a disturbing trend all year long for Flashes fans.
Next up for Northern Illinois is Ball State while Kent State will take on arch-rival Akron at home on Saturday.