Dingle, Carter lead Flashes in home opener


Sophomore guard Megan Carter drives to the hoop against Akron at James A. Rhodes Arena Saturday, Jan. 27, 2018. The Zips beat the Flashes, 75-60, for their first conference win of the season. [FILE]

Gina Butkovich

The Kent State women’s basketball team (1-2) played a close home opener, defeating Northern Kentucky University 62-61.

This is the first win of the season for the Flashes, following two season-opening losses versus North Carolina and North Carolina State.

“Our goal is continuous improvement from one game to the next,” coach Todd Starkey said.

Northern Kentucky was picked to finish sixth in the Horizon League according to a preseason poll. They beat Division II Alderson Broaddus, 73-32, in its lone regular season contest.

The starting five of the game, were freshman guard Asiah Dingle, redshirt junior guard Megan Carter, senior guard Alexa Golden, junior guard Ali Poole and freshman forward Lindsey Thall.

Dingle lead the Flashes with 15 points and four rebounds, with Carter finishing close behind with 14 points and four rebounds.

The Flashes had a successful first quarter, leading 15-12 at the end of the quarter.

The second quarter went just as well, with Kent State leading, 28-23.

With 4:32 left on the clock in the third quarter, the Flashes held a 41-33 lead. The end of the third saw Kent State holding onto a close 42-41 lead.

“We had a 15 point lead, and than we let them catch up,” Starkey said.“We need to get a little better with passing and screening.”

At the media timeout with 4:39 left in play, Kent State trailed 52-50. With three minutes remaining, Dingle drew a foul on an layup. Dingle got the free shot to tie it up at 54-54.The Flashes held onto a 60-58 lead with less than a minute left. Poole added two points from the foul line, and the Flashes held on to win 62-61.

“We didn’t do a whole lot well this game, but we found a way to win,” Starkey said.

This is only the third game for the season, and the first home game, for a team of young Kent State players.

“This is a young group and we are still learning game situations,” Starkey said. “We learned how competitive and physical college basketball is.This is a game we can learn from and grow from.”

The Flashes return to the M.A.C. Center on Sunday at 1:30 vs Oakland.