Flashes’ second half push not enough to overcome Bobcats’ offense

Mason Lawlor Sports Reporter

Kent State women’s basketball came up short in Athens on Wednesday, dropping a 85-70 game to Ohio University.  This was the Flashes first Mid-American Conference loss this season, and snapped a four game win streak.  

After a rough first half, Kent State (5-3, 4-1 MAC) fought back in the second half, getting outscored by only three points.  Ultimately, it wasn’t enough to overcome a slow first quarter offensively.  

“We really amped up our pressure in the fourth quarter there, and it really helped us out,” Head Coach Todd Starkey said.  “Our kids showed some heart and I’m proud of the way they competed.  It’s hard to win in this building.” 

While Ohio (10-5, 8-4 MAC) mounted a 12-point lead by halftime, the Flashes were able to cut the lead down to 75-70 with just over two minutes left in regulation.  They shot 45% from field goal range.  

Sophomore guard Katie Shumate led the scoring attack for the Flashes, putting up 23 points on 9-15 shooting.  Junior guard Hannah Young and freshman guard Casey Santoro followed up with double figure point totals off the bench.  

“We had a good balanced attack tonight,” Starkey said.  “We had a lot of kids step up when there were some rough spots, so good signs for us.” 

Kent State gave up 22 turnovers on the night, which Coach Starkey chalked up to a long break from game action.  The Flashes haven’t played a live game since January 9 due to COVID-19 related postponements.  

“We’ve got to get back used to playing with each other,” he said.  “That was a little bit to be expected, but we’ve got to take some positives from this game and carry it over to Saturday.” 

For Ohio, guard Cece Hooks piled on 29 points, nine assists and six rebounds before fouling out late in the game.  Junior forward Gabby Burris added 22 points on 6-12 from the field, helping the Bobcats advance to a season record of 10-5.  

Kent State will look to build more continuity with a game on Saturday against Miami (OH).  Tipoff is set for 12 pm at the M.A.C. Center.  

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