Avery’s continued absence, Walker’s poor shooting snaps win streak in CMU


Junior guard Anthony Roberts attempts a layup against Eastern Michigan on Fab. 16.

Ian Kreider

As senior guard Jalen Avery sat with his warm-ups on for the third straight game, senior guard Jaylin Walker had his worst shooting performance of his career.

He finished 2-for-16 shooting and 0-for-4 from three point range. It was the second time in four games that he failed to make a three. He finished with 14 points with the majority of his points came from the foul line. He finished 10-for-12 from the line, but missed a free throw that would have cut the Central Michigan lead to three with less than two minutes left.

Kent State drops to 19-7 and 8-5 in Mid-American Conference play with the 84-74 loss, while Central Michigan improves to 18-8 and 7-6 in the MAC.

Kent State allowed its most points in a game since Jan. 22 during an 87-85 win against Toledo in overtime. The Flashes had four players with two fouls with more than eight minutes left in the first half. Central Michigan finished 23-for-34 from the line. They came into the game averaging the fourth-most free throws attempts per game in the nation.

Freshman guard Anthony Roberts also had his worst shooting performance of the season, as he finished 3-for-10 for eight points.

Junior forward Philip Whittington tied a career-high with 18 points in 24 minutes. He shot 6-for-10, but grabbed five rebounds. It was the seventh time this season that he has secured five rebounds or less in a game. It was the third time that it has happened in a game where he has played over 20 minutes.

Whittington added 12 points in the second half, including back-to-back scores that gave Kent State a 61-56 lead with less than 10 minutes left. The Chippewas closed the final nine minutes on a 23-10 run. The Flashes struggled to limit Larry Austin Jr. who finished with 17 points and 11 assists. He facilitated their offense during the late run.

Kent State continues its season against Buffalo at 7 p.m. Friday at Alumni Arena in Amherst, New York. The Bulls are coming off a 114-67 win against Ohio on Tuesday.

 Ian Kreider is a sports reporter. Contact him at [email protected]