Flashes head to Bowling Green with division lead on the line

Kent State senior forward Chelsi Watson of the women’s basketball team comes down with the offensive rebound against The University of Akron Zips at the James A. Rhodes Arena on Saturday, Feb. 11, 2017.

Henry Palattella

On Jan. 28th, the women’s basketball team used a redshirt freshman guard Megan Carter game-winner to sneak by Bowling Green State University 80-78.

The win not only kept them afloat in the race for second in the Mid-American Conference East Division, but also gave them their 11th win, which equaled their win total from the past two years combined.

The Flashes will get a chance to turn the Falcons into their 16th win Wednesday night when they travel to Bowling Green. The game holds great significance for both teams, as the Flashes (15-11, 9-5 MAC) will look to stay at first place in the MAC East, while the Falcons (7-19, 3-11 MAC) hope to secure a win in an attempt to possess the eighth seed in the upcoming MAC Tournament.

The Flashes have gone 4-1 since Carter’s game-winner, with each win serving as a tangible milestone for the team. Their first win was an 84-66 win over Miami (OH) that moved them into second place in the MAC East; however, their stay in second place wasn’t long. The Flashes dropped their next game against Buffalo, 77-62.

The Flashes got back on the winning path in their next game when they beat Eastern Michigan 83-65. The win exorcised some demons for the Flashes, as it not only finished off their season sweep of the Eagles, but it also was payback for the Flashes, whose past two seasons ended at the hands of the Eagles in the MAC Tournament.

The Flashes continued that theme of revenge in their next contest when they knocked off rival Akron by a score of 72-58 at Akron’s James A. Rhodes Arena, a win that marked the first time anyone on the Flashes roster had beaten the Zips. The Flashes closed out the five-game stretch with an 83-77 win over Ohio University, arguably their biggest win in five years. The win bumped the Flashes to first in the MAC East and the fourth overall seed in the MAC.

The Falcons beat both Akron and Miami (OH) since their game against the Flashes, but they’ve also had ugly losses to Ball State, Toledo and Western Michigan.

One of the major factors that made the Flashes meeting with Bowling Green so close was the fact sophomore guard Alexa Golden didn’t play in their last meeting. Starkey believed this led to the Flashes leaky perimeter defense in that game.

 “She’s probably our best perimeter defender. That hurt us a little bit,” Starkey said after the first meeting between the two teams. “Hopefully she’ll be back (on Tuesday) for Miami (OH). We’re going to see how’s she doing.”

Tip-off for Wednesday’s game is scheduled for 7 p.m.

Henry Palattella is the sports editor, contact him at [email protected]