Well, we now know the South Florida Bulls are no Ferris State Bulldogs! A week after losing at home to the Division II Bulldogs, the Bowling Green Falcons went down to the sunshine state and beat the Bulls on their home court, 79-70 on Sunday afternoon.
The game was played in typical fashion for the Falcons so far this season under first-year head coach Chris Jans. They didn't have any one player do anything spectacular, but they were able to grind it out as a team and notch another one in the win column. This was also a game that Falcon teams of recent years would not have won. With the win, Bowling Green moves to 7-3 on the season and the culture change project continues to progress under Jans. The Bulls stand 6-7 on the year and will now head into American Conference play.
The game was a close affair in the first half with neither team holding a lead of more than four points. The Falcons played with the lead most of the half, and the Bulls took their first lead of the game, 27-25 with just 4:22 left on a layup by Anthony Collins. The half ended with the Bulls holding a 34-31 lead.
The Falcons retook the lead, 44-43 in the second half with 15 minutes left in the game on a free throw by Spencer Parker. Bowling Green would never trail again the rest of the way, but it wasn't easy. The Falcons pushed their lead to near double digits on several occasions in the final 10 minutes but could never totally put South Florida away until the final buzzer sounded.
Richuan Holmes led four Falcons scoring in double figures. Holmes finished with 19 points, nine rebounds and four blocked shots. He also put an exclamation point on the game with a thunderous dunk with 1:50 left that gave the Falcons a nine point lead, 74-65.
Jehvon Clarke added 15 points for Bowling Green, while Jovan Austin had 11 and Zack Denny finished with 10. Forward Chris Perry had an outstanding game for the Bulls, finishing with 21 points on 9 of 10 shooting from the field. Collins had 20 points and a team-high six assists for South Florida.
Both teams shot 50 percent from the field for the game, and the Falcons basically won the game from the three point line. The Falcons outscored the Bulls 27 to 12 from beyond the arc, connecting on 9 of 22 attempts for 41 percent shooting. Denny and Clarke did the most damage with both hitting three three-pointers each.
The Falcons held a slight edge in points from the free throw line, 18-16, and won the turnover battle 12-9. Both teams pulled down 31 rebounds in the game.
The Falcons will finished up the non-conference portion of their schedule next Saturday at home against Chicago State before starting Mid-American Conference play the following week at Kent State.