The Akron Zips dropped a game for the first time this afternoon against the Miami Hurricanes in the semifinals of the Charleston Classic. It was a close game in the first half as it was back and forth throughout the entire half. The Hurricanes were able to take a 35-30 lead into the break and the Zips went into the locker room with confidence that they could hang with the 'Canes.
The second half turned out to be a much different story. Miami quickly jumped out to a 40-30 lead and forced Keith Dambrot to take a timeout to try and slow things down. Out of the timeout, Pat Forsythe of Akron made a layup to cut the Hurricane lead to eight. Forsythe finished with another good game for the Zips scoring eleve points, grabbing six boards, dishing out three assists, and blocking two shots. Forsythe made a free throw a minute later to cut the Miami lead to 7 and that's as low as it would get the rest of the game.
An 8-0 run led by Sheldon McClellan and James Palmer of Miami made it a 48-33 game and, again, causing Akron to call a timeout. Over the next four minutes, the Hurricanes outscored the Zips 10-2 to take a massive 58-35 lead that did all but knock the Zips out of the game.
The two freshman guards Antino Jackson and Noah Robotham played decent games as Robotham added ten points and Jackson three of his own. Jake Kretzer also added eleven off the bench in the loss.
So, what went wrong for the now 2-1 Zips? Shooting 20-60 from the field didn't help the cause nor did making four of only seven free throw attempts. The Zips committed fifteen fouls sending Miami to the line twelve times.
The big issue was the stud guard for the Hurricanes, Angel Rodriguez. Rodriguez had a slow start, but nearly achieved a triple-double as he finished with fifteen points, nine assists, eight rebounds, two blocks, and a steal. He did everything and the Akron back court wasn't ready.