The Bowling Green State University Falcons' defense held Akron to 39.7 percent shooting, yet struggled to find any type of offensive flow in a 57-47 road loss at the James A. Rhodes Arena in Akron, Ohio on Saturday night in a late season MAC East clash.
With the loss, the Falcons fall to 12-17 overall and 6-10 in the MAC, while the Zips improve to 18-11 overall and 10-6 in league play with the win.
BGSU was led by its two bigs in Richaun Holmes and Cameron Black. Holmes had 14 points, nine rebounds and four blocks, giving him 83 swats on the season and 156 for his career which puts him just three shy of Otis Polk's BGSU career blocks record of 159. Black registered his fourth double-double of the season, as the senior had 10 points, 11 rebounds and three blocks of his own.
The Falcons' Spencer Parker had 12 points and seven rebounds, while guard Jehvon Clarke had nine points, four steals and two assists. With his two dimes, Clarke eclipsed the 200 career assists mark, giving him 201 now in his three years at BGSU.
The Zips were led by Demetrius Treadwell's game-high 17 points, as he also pulled in nine rebounds, while Quincy Diggs added 13 points and six boards in the win.
Both teams struggled to find points in the first half, as the two teams combined for only 38 points on 15 made field goals during the first 20 minutes of play.
Akron opened the game up on a 7-0 run, making all three of its first three shot attempts, to force the Falcons to use an early timeout with 17:45 to go in the opening half.
Following back-to-back layups from Black to put the Falcons down three at 7-4, BGSU cut the Zips' lead to one at 7-6 on an Anthony Henderson layup and then once more at 9-8 on a Holmes' basket down low before a 19 foot jump shot from Clarke minutes later gave the orange and brown its first lead of the game at 12-10 with 10:30 to go before the halftime break.
However, that would be the last made field goal for the Falcons for the next 7:24 of the game, as BGSU's offense was able to come up with only two points, both free throws by Holmes, during that cold spell.
Akron was unable to take advantage, as the Bowling Green defense kept fighting and kept the Falcons in the game, as the Zips totaled just six points of its own during that span by way of two three-pointers to put the score at 18-12.
A rebound and two-handed dunk by Holmes at the 2:36 mark of the opening period ended the Falcons scoring drought, as BGSU finished the half out on a 6-2 run to trim the Akron lead to two at 20-18 at the halftime intermission.
The offense picked up in the second half for both teams, as Akron used an 11-5 run to take an eight point lead at the 16:01 mark on a layup in the paint from Pat Forsythe.
Bowling Green responded with a three-pointer from Clarke, which jump-started a 9-1 run by the Falcons over the next four minutes who tied the score up at 32-32 on a steal and layup by Clarke with 12:22 to play.
After the two teams traded baskets, a dunk from Akron's Nick Harney and a layup from BGSU's Black, to put the score at 34-34, the Falcons hit another scoring lull, this time connecting on only one field goal over the next eight minutes to fall behind by double digits.
This time Akron took advantage of the Falcons' scoring woes, using a 15-2 run, capped off by a three-pointer from Diggs, to push its lead out to 13 at 49-36 with 4:38 in regulation.
A two-handed dunk from Holmes at the 3:27 mark ended the Falcons' offensive famine, as BGSU was able to use a quick nine point spurt to cut the Zips lead to nine at 54-45 with 1:36 to play on a three-pointer from Parker.
Yet time would run out on the Falcons, as a layup from Diggs and a free throw from Treadwell sealed the 57-47 win for Akron.
Bowling Green, who outrebounded Akron 39-35, outscored the Zips 12-4 in second chance points, yet the home team held a 30-28 edge in points in the paint and a big 22-10 advantage in points off turnovers in the contest. Akron also outscored the Falcons 12-0 in bench points.
The Falcons shot 18-of-51 (35.3 percent) from the floor overall, but were only 2-of-13 (15.1 percent) from behind the three-point line. BGSU was also 9-of-13 (69.2 percent) from the free throw line in the loss.
Akron, who was only 8-of-30 (26.7 percent) in the first half, shot 15-of-28 (53.6 percent) in the second half to finish the game 23-of-58 (39.7 percent) overall. The Zips were also 7-of-15 (46.7 percent) from long distance, giving them a 15 point advantage over the Falcons from behind the three-point line for the game.
The loss is the 11th straight for the Falcons to the Zips, as BGSU last beat Akron back on March 1, 2009.
Bowling Green (12-17, 6-10 MAC) will return home to host the Ohio Bobcats on Senior Night, Tuesday, March 4, at 7 p.m. in the Stroh Center. Prior to the tip-off, BGSU will recognize seniors Cameron Black and Craig Sealey.