Two suddenly hot Mid-American Conference east teams will square off on Tuesday night as the Kent State Golden Flashes host the Bowling Green Falcons. Both teams are well behind east division leader Akron (9-1), with Kent State at 5-5 and Bowling Green at 4-6.
However, the Golden Flashes have won four out of their last five games and the Falcons have won two straight. Last Saturday, Kent State went into Miami and won a hard fought contest against the Redhawks, 66-62. Senior Jimmy Hall had his sixth double-double in the last seven games with 12 points, 12 rebounds, four assists and three blocks. During this last five game stretch, the Golden Flashes have beaten Northern Illinois, Eastern Michigan and now Miami, all on the road.
The Falcons exorcized some demons on Saturday at home when they beat arch rival Toledo for the first time in six tries, spanning nearly five years. Bowling Green won the game 104-100 in double overtime as senior guard Zack Denny scored a career-high 30 points. Denny hit all five three-point attempts he took, including a big one that tied the score with six seconds left in regulation and sent the game to overtime.
Tuesday night’s game will be the first of two games the two teams will play in the next few weeks. Bowling Green lost both regular season games against Kent State last year during the regular season, before upsetting the Golden Flashes on their home court in the first round of the 2016 MAC Tournament last March, 70-69.
Hall leads Kent State in scoring (18.5) and rebounding (10.8). Hall is fourth in the MAC in scoring, and fourth in the conference in rebounding. Hall also is averaging a team-high 2.6 assists and 1.0 blocks per contest. Sophomore guard Jaylin Walker and senior guard Deon Edwin rank second and third on the team in scoring, averaging 14.4 points and 13.0 points, respectively.
Denny ranks 23rd in scoring average in the MAC at 13.0, and he’s supported by fellow senior Wes Alcegaire (12.6) and sophomore Damajeo Wiggins (10.9). Alcegaire has scored 25 and 22 points in his last two outings. Wiggins is fifth in rebounding at 8.3, and senior guard Ismail Ali is fifth in assists with 4.7. Wiggins has six double-doubles on the year and had a school record 22 rebounds earlier in the year against Central Michigan.
When: Tuesday, February 7, 7 p.m.
Watch: Kent State Live Video (KentStateSports.com)
Listen: WFRO (Eagle 99) Fremont, Ohio