Turnovers plague Flashes in 60-50 loss


Kent State junior guard Alexa Golden dribbles past Youngstown State freshman forward Amara Chikwe at Beeghly Center in Youngstown, Ohio, Tuesday, Nov. 14, 2017. [FILE]

Scott Lendak

Bowling Green had just one Mid-American Conference win before Wednesday’s matchup with Kent State, but the Falcons improved their MAC record after a 60-50 home win against the Flashes.

Going into the game, Kent State senior forward Jordan Korinek was the leading scorer in the conference, averaging over 20 points per game.

Bowling Green held her to just seven points on six shots.

“Bowling Green did a good job of game-planning against us,” coach Todd Starkey said. “If you beat Jordan up early, then it gets her out. They did a good job of clogging the paint, but the fact that Jordan only got six field goal attempts is partly on our guards not being able to get the ball inside without turning it over.”

The Flashes’ offensive struggles determined the result of the game. Kent State continued to commit turnovers, something the team has grappled with all season.

The Flashes committed 20 turnovers in the loss, higher than their average of 17 per game this season. Kent State made just 3-of-19 three-point shots.  

“We’ve got to quit playing down to the level of our competition,” Starkey said. “We come here and act like we don’t want to be here.”

The Falcons outscored the Flashes, 20-12, in the fourth quarter to secure the victory.

“Bowling Green just wanted it more than us down the stretch,” Starkey said. “We didn’t execute well. They got to every loose ball down the stretch and obviously knocked down some big shots.”

The game was the first time in Starkey’s two years as head coach the Flashes lost to a team in the MAC with a losing record.

The Flashes’ poor performance followed a great effort in a game at Central Michigan in which Kent State scored a season-high 84 points in a close defeat.

Central Michigan defeated Bowling Green, 90-54, earlier in the season. Inconsistency is a theme that Starkey has preached about throughout the season.

“We’ve been vastly inconsistent,” Starkey said. “We can’t score 50 points against this team and score 84 against Central Michigan. It just makes no sense to me.”

Sophomore guard Megan Carter added 12 points for the Flashes, while graduate student forward McKenna Stephens had a career-high 13 rebounds.

Sophomore Ali Poole led the way for the Flashes in the first quarter with 12 points, but finished with just 17 points on the night.

“She knocked down some shots early,” Starkey said. “Then we stopped moving the ball. We tried to force things into Jordan, but people weren’t making plays. We looked like we were running in mud today.”

Bowling Green had a balanced scoring attack with no players scoring more than 13 points.

The Flashes will try to bounce back against Ball State at 2 p.m. Saturday at the M.A.C. Center.

“Ball State is one of the best teams in the league no doubt,” Starkey said. “They’re going to want to come in and bury us. Nobody will have any sympathy for us because we’re feeling sorry for ourselves. We need to have a couple good days of practice and get back to it on Saturday.”

Scott Lendak is a sports reporter. Contact him at [email protected].