TOLEDO - Jordon Crawford scored 20 points and Luke Kraus added a season-high 12 but the Bowling Green men's basketball team lost to rival Toledo for the first time since the 2007-08 MAC Tournament, falling 75-62 Saturday night in front of 6,361 fans at Savage Arena.
Toledo made 26-of-27 free-throws and fought off a handful of Bowling Green second-half rallies to keep the Falcons winless on the road this year. Crawford had seven assists to go with his 20 points and A'uston Calhoun added 13 points despite playing limited minutes in the first half with foul trouble.
Although Bowling Green went into the break trailing 28-22, the Falcons were within strike even though Calhoun and Chauncey Orr combined to play only 18 minutes after each picked up a pair of early fouls. As well, Toledo was a perfect 10-of-10 at the free-throw line in the opening 20 minutes while Bowling Green did not get to the stripe until midway through the second half.
Toledo, though, shot 56 percent in the second half after Bowling Green held the Rockets to just 36 percent in the first half. Toledo built its biggest lead of the contest at 40-28 on a Josh Lemons bank shot with 14:30 to play in the contest.
The Falcons answered with six in a row on baskets by Orr, Calhoun and Crawford but Toledo push the lead back to 10 with baskets from Rian Pearson and Julius Brown. The Rockets eventually took another 12 point lead at 50-38 before another Falcon rally. This time Calhoun had a dunk followed by a Kraus three-pointer to make it 50-43. But Toledo answered again with two free-throws and a dunk by Pearson.
Kraus knocked down another three-pointer and Crawford hit a jumper as Bowling Green got within six at 54-48 with 7:09 to play. Toledo turned the ball over on its next possession but Calhoun missed a jumper and the Falcons never had a chance to get that close again. The Rockets used a 9-2 run over the next three minutes to take a 63-50 lead and Bowling Green did not threaten again.
Toledo held a 37-25 rebounding advantage to overcome 13 turnovers, three more than Bowling Green. While the Falcons shot 50 percent in the second half, the team made just 5-of-20 three-pointers on the night.
Richaun Holmes had a team-high five rebounds and added three blocked shots, giving him 53 on the season. He moved into second place in single-season blocked shots in BGSU history and needs just seven more to become the first Falcon in school history with 60 blocks in one year.
With the win, Toledo improves to 7-10 on the season and 3-3 in MAC play. Bowling Green falls to 7-12 overall and 2-4 in conference. The Falcons are 2-0 at home and 0-4 on the road in league play and will host Akron Wednesday night at 7 p.m. in a game televised by SportsTime Ohio. Akron enters the contest tied for first in the MAC at 6-0 and the Zips are 15-4 overall. Kids 12 and under receive free admission to the contest.