The Bowling Green Falcons outscored the Miami RedHawks 43-6 over an 18 minute span of the first half en route to a merciless 91-45 rout of Miami on Sunday afternoon. The game was held at the Stroh Center in Bowling Green, Ohio.
The RedHawks came into the game on a two-game winning streak against the Falcons. Their sweep of BGSU during the 2012-2013 season was the first time Bowling Green had lost twice to the same opponent in the same season in eight years.
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Miami began the game on a positive note. They won the opening tip and, just nine seconds into the game, took a 3-0 lead on a triple by Hannah Robertson. However, Erica Donovan answered with a 3-pointer of her own on Bowling Green's opening possession, and that set off a storm of trouble for Miami. Donovan's three was the first of 15 that BGSU would make during the contest.
A huge part of the early difficulty for Miami was turnovers. The Falcon defense seemed to be everywhere during the opening minutes, and as a result, the RedHawks gave the ball away eight different times in less than six minutes. That led to several easy scores for BGSU, and the Falcons led 15-3 at the 6:00 mark. Shortly after Miami's eighth turnover, Jillian Halfhill sank a three to give the Falcons an 18-3 lead that effectively ended the game.
Bowling Green's initial run reached 21-0 before Miami finally connected on their second basket. The RedHawks traded a pair of threes over a five-minute span in the middle of the half, but a Rachel Konieczki triple out of the third media timeout sent BGSU on another run. This burst reached 16-0, as the Falcon defense forced three more turnovers and eight straight missed shots. Seven different players scored for BGSU during the six-minute-long effort.
The RedHawks finally made their first two-point field goal of the half with exactly one minute left, thanks to a layup by Kindsay Brandt. Three more points by Miami in the final minute provided the halftime margin of 43-14. The RedHawks scored the first three and final five points of the half. In between, BGSU outscored them 43-6.
The Falcons shot 50 percent across the board in the first half, while Miami managed to make just 20 percent of theirs, including only three of 14 from behind the arc. Twenty-three of their 43 points were as a result of turnovers and offensive rebounds.
The second half was more of the same. Nicole Anderson started the half with a 3-pointer for Miami before BGSU erupted for another 11-0 run and a 54-17 advantage. The lead hovered in the 30s for several minutes, until a Miriam Justinger three pushed the lead over 40 for good. The score was 75-33 with 8:00 left, and the lead would grow to as much as 48 points before a Hannah McCue jumper inside the final minute created the final score of 91-45.
Bowling Green finished the game with a shooting percentage of 52.7, including 56.5 in the second half. They made 15 of their first 28 attempts from behind the arc (before missing their final three) and were 18-of-24 from the free throw line. Miami made nine of their 20 shots in the second half and four of their 11 3-pointers, but they converted just 31 percent of their shots overall.
The Falcons had a 35-29 edge in rebounds and forced 20 turnovers. They committed only seven of their own, and just three of those came in the second half. Those turnovers were an absolute killer for Miami, as the Falcons earned 16 fast-break points, and the 20 giveaways resulted in a total of 34 points for BGSU. In addition to having only seven turnovers, they passed the ball very well and ended the game with 22 assists on 29 field goals.
Nine players saw action for Bowling Green, and all nine played at least 14 minutes, scored at least four points, and had at least one rebound. All but one had at least one assist, and no player committed more than one turnover. Seven of the nine made at least one 3-pointer, and eight made at least one trip to the free throw line. It was truly a complete, team effort. Four players scored in double-figures, and that group was led by Jillian Halfhill, who scored 17. Erica Donovan added 14 with four rebounds and five assists. Alexis Rogers scored just nine points but added seven rebounds and four assists. Hannah McCue led Miami with nine points.
MAC teams have only one game during the upcoming week, so Bowling Green's next game is on Saturday at Eastern Michigan. Miami gets no relief, as their next contest is also on Saturday at Central Michigan, the only team undefeated in MAC play.
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