The No. 8 Express men's basketball team saw their eight-game winning streak come to an end in an 80-67 loss to No. 2 Cincinnati State Technical and Community College on the road today.
Cincinnati State's Winston Grays scored 11 points early in the first half to help his team take a 21-13 lead with 13 minutes left in the first half.
The Express went on a 5-0 run, but the Surge answered with a 7-0 run to take a 28-18 lead with 8:21 left. They stretched it to a 39-25 lead on a McKinley Bell lay-up with 5:22 left in the half before the Express rallied, cutting the deficit to eight at halftime.
After Tony Boykins (Loy Norrix/Kalamazoo, Mich.) opened the second half with a second chance bucket, the Surge went on a 14-0 run to take a 56-36 lead with 15:37 left.
Similar to the first half, the Express went on a 6-0 run to trim the deficit to 14, but the Surge answered with a 4-0 run to push the lead back to 18.
The Express only got as close as 12 on a lay-up and a free throw from Shavon Gayle(Windsor Catholic Central/Windsor, Ontario, Canada) with 1:02 remaining.
The Surge scored their final five points from the foul line, while the Express closed the game on a 4-0 run thanks to back-to-back baskets by Boykins.
Grays produced a game-high 20 points on 7-for-13 shooting, including a 2-for-2 finish at the foul line and a 4-for-4 finish at the foul line.
Andy Bachman (North Side/Fort Wayne, Ind.) led the Express with 17 points, while adding five rebounds, three blocks and one steals. Boykins chipped in 15 points, six rebounds and two blocks.
Bikramjit Gill (Our Ascension of the Lord/Toronto, Ontario, Canada) added 14 points, 12 rebounds, three steals and two blocks, as well, for the Express. Gill upped his team-high season block total to 49, and he is now nine short of tying James Kelly's single season record. He also produced his third straight double-double, and his fifth double-double in conference play.
The Express were hurt by the lack of scoring from two of their guards, John Murry (North Central/Indianapolis, Ind.) and Shaakir Lindsey (Teaneck/Teaneck, N.J.). The duo combined for 10 points, with Murry leading the way with seven. The duo combined to shoot 2-for-16 from the field with 10 turnovers.
Lindsey did, however, lead the team in assists with eight, while Murry was second on the team with three.
On the other side, the Surge got 16 points, nine rebounds, three blocks and two steals from Chrisean Marsden, as well as 14 points, eight rebounds, two steals and one block from McKinley Bell. Marsden finished 8-for-9 from the field, as the Surge shot 33-for-72 (45.8 percent) overall from the field as a team - despite an 11-for-20 finish from the foul line.
The Express offense, as a whole, struggled from the field as they finished 23-for-65 overall, 7-for-27 (25.9 percent) from 3-point range and 14-for-17 from the foul line.
The Express committed 22 turnovers, as well, compared to just 12 for the Surge. Orlando Berry ran the point well for the Surge with seven assists and zero turnovers. He came into the game averaging 0.7 turnovers in conference play.
With the loss, the Express fell into a first place tie in the loss column with the Surge in the Ohio Community College Athletic Conference (OCCAC). The Express are now 20-5 overall and 7-0 in OCCAC play, while the Surge are 23-3 overall and 9-1 in OCCAC play.
The Express will look to bounce back after seeing their eight-game winning streak snapped on the road Wednesday against Edison Community College at 7:30 p.m.