Hall leads Flashes past Marist College

Stephen Means II

Following two subpar games to start the season, Jimmy Hall broke out with an outstanding performance to lead the Kent State men’s basketball team (2-1) over the Marist College Red Foxes (1-2), 79-72.

“It’s about time,” said coach Rob Senderoff jokingly of Hall’s performance. “He’s been in the gym the last couple of days nonstop after practice — to me, that’s how you get out of a funk.” 

The junior forward led the Flashes with 27 points and 10 rebounds, including 13 points in the first half. Hall is coming off two games where he had a combined 21 points and 16 rebounds.

“It just felt good to come out here and play hard and play for my teammates,” Hall said. “It’s a process for me to try to see the double-teams and try to make plays, and I just did a great job today.”

Junior guard Kellon Thomas added 16 points, while senior center Khaliq Spicer added nine points and 11 rebounds. This is the third straight game that Thomas has scored 15 or more points.

“He’s playing very well,” Senderoff said. “He’s playing with a ton of confidence. I think that’s probably the most important thing.”

The Flashes shot a surprising 14 for 19 from the free-throw line, which was a huge turnaround from Wednesday’s contest against Southern Illinois University.

“That’s what won us the game — we shot 80 percent from the line,” Senderoff said. “(Hall and Spicer) combined for 12 for 15. That’s a good number and we have to keep shooting them like that. There (are) going to be games where we don’t make them, and then there (are) going to be games where we do what we did today.”

Freshman guard Brian Parker led the Red Foxes with 30 points but was unable to play in the second half down the stretch after cramping up on multiple occasions.

Red Foxes’ junior guard Khallid Hart added 27 points and shot seven of 11 from the three-point line.

“We have to do a better job defensively,” Senderoff said. “That’s on everyone, not just the guy guarding the ball. We have to do a much better job guarding the ball if we expect to win games.”

The Flashes will return to the court on Tuesday with a doubleheader, along with the women’s basketball team. The women will take on University of Minnesota while the men will follow against St. Francis University. The first game tips off at 6:30 p.m.

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