BOWLING GREEN, Ohio – The Bowling Green men's basketball team dominated inside and out as the Falcons rolled to an 87-56 victory over New Orleans in the Stroh Center Thursday evening.
Eleven different players got in the scoring columns as the Falcons scored 38 points in the paint, made 9-of-20 three-pointers, had 18 offensive rebounds and generally cruised after the midway point of the first half. In fact, the 87 points tied the most the Falcons have scored in the two-year history of the Stroh Center.
Bowling Green used an extended 29-5 run that started late in the first half and picked up over the first seven minutes of the second half to put the contest away.
Jordon Crawford scored the final 10 points of the first half and the Falcons pushed a nine-point lead to 17 at the half, 42-25. Bowling Green then came out and made eight of its first nine shots in the second half as the lead ballooned to 34 points at 64-30 with 13 minutes to play. The Falcons continued to extend the lead until Damarkeo Lyshe's three-pointer with 3:26 to play gave the Falcons a 39-point bulge at 87-48. New Orleans scored the final eight points of the game, but it was academic at that point.
Crawford and A'uston Calhoun scored 16 points each to tie for game-high honors. The duo scored 21 of those points during the 10 minute stretch that accounted for that 29-5 spurt.
New Orleans stayed close early and was only down 9-8 after a pair of Rarlensee Nelson free-throws four minutes into the contest. Chauncey Orr, though, scored the next five points on a three-point play and a lay-up to make it 14-8. An A'uston Calhoun bucket with 12:02 left made it 20-10 but the Privateers answered with six straight to get within four.
James Erger stopped the run with the first of his two three-pointers and the Falcons quickly pushed the lead back to double-digits on a Cameron Black lay-up with 4:10 to go.
Crawford scored back-to-back fastbreak lay-ups in the final 90 seconds of the half and Bowling Green went to the break with a 17-point advantage.
After Crawford opened the second half with a jumper and Calhoun followed with a pair of free-throws, New Orleans was never closer than 20 the rest of the way. Black's jumper with 15:46 to go gave the Falcons a 30-point lead.
Orr was the only other Falcon to score in double-figures, finishing with 12 points on 5-of-7 shooting. He added three rebounds and three assists. Black had eight points and a season-high eight rebounds, while Holmes came off the bench for nine points and a season-best 10 rebounds, six on the offensive glass.
Spencer Parker had career-bests with seven points and five rebounds in 15 minutes and Luke Kraus had three points, four rebounds, three assists and two steals. Erger tied his season-high with three assists to go with his six points and added two steals.
As a team, Bowling Green had a season-high 23 assists and tied a season-best with 13 steals. The Falcons also had just eight turnovers, nine fewer than New Orleans. BGSU held a 46-34 rebounding edge, which helped to account for the Falcons attempting 76 shots, 22 more than New Orleans.
New Orleans falls to 8-15 with the loss and Bowling Green improves to 11-15. The Falcons will be on the road for the team's BracketBusters contest at IPFW Saturday at 7 p.m. before closing the regular season with four consecutive Mid-American Conference games, three of which will be in the Stroh Center. Bowling Green is 9-3 in the Stroh Center this year and is now 10-0 all-time in the building when scoring at least 70 points.