Basketball tops WMU in overtime


Redshirt junior forward Jimmy Hall throws down a dunk in the MACC Tuesday, Feb. 16, 2016. The Flashes beat Western Michigan University 85-78 in overtime.

Zac Sommer

After leading by as many as 12 points in the second half, the Kent State men’s basketball team (17-9, 8-5 Mid-American Conference) found themselves heading to overtime against Western Michigan University (10-16, 4-9 MAC) for the second time this season.

Kent State made nine of ten free throws in overtime, giving the Flashes an 85-78 win over Western Michigan Tuesday night.

“Really hard fought win and I’m really proud of the guys for finding a way to pull it out,” coach Rob Senderoff said. “When we lost the lead, they didn’t panic and made big plays.”

Senior guard Galal Cancer scored a career-high 24 points, making eight of 13 from the field and shooting 60 percent from three-point range.

“I’m just shooting with confidence,” Cancer said. “They aren’t all going to go in, but that comes with getting extra shots and just being comfortable with the shots that I take. I felt good shooting today.”

Kent State scored 42 points in the first half without shooting a free throw. The team made 9 of 11 in the second half and 9 of 10 in overtime.

Redshirt junior guard Kellon Thomas was perfect from the free throw line in overtime, making all four attempts, finishing with 15 points and five assists.

“This game was really big for us,” Thomas said.  “We lost a tough one to Eastern that we felt like we shouldn’t have lost.  I think this is what we needed to get our confidence back up.”

Redshirt junior guard Jimmy Hall tallied 15 points, six rebounds and three assists, with five of those 15 points coming in overtime.

Kent State is home this weekend as they get set to take on the University of Akron (20-5, 9-3 MAC), the MAC conference-leader, on Friday at 6 p.m. in the MAAC Center.

“Each win in this league is tough and hard-fought,” Senderoff said.  “We are happy we got this one … and (now) we will start our preparation for Friday’s game.”

Zac Sommer is a sports reporter for The Kent Stater. Contact him at [email protected].