Men’s basketball falls to Buffalo at home


Kent State defense awaits the outcome of a shot taken by the Bulls’ in their losing game against Buffalo, Saturday, Feb. 22, 2014, in the M.A.C.C. The final score was 78-69.

Stephen Means II

Kent State’s (19-10, 10-6 Mid-American Conference) final four regular season games may affect where they will be seeded in the MAC tournament, and as of now, are scheduled against three of the top teams in the MAC East.

So far, the Flashes have dropped the first two to Miami (12-17, 7-9 MAC) and Buffalo (19-9, 10-6 MAC).

In their first meeting, the Bulls dominated the entire game and won 80-55 at home. This time, the game, especially for the majority the first half, was close. Buffalo took control in the second half, outplaying the Flashes to win 71-65.

“They’re a tough match-up because they’re good,” coach Rob Senderoff said. “There are other good teams that maybe we play a little bit better against, but those guys competed really hard tonight and deserve to win because of how hard they competed.”

Buffalo junior guard Jarryn Skeete, who finished with 14 points, started strong by hitting four three-pointers to open gameplay.

The Flashes answered back as redshirt sophomore Jimmy Hall scored 11 points and pulled down five rebounds in the first half; Hall ended with 18 points and 10 rebounds.

Even after another standout performance, Hall was more concerned about the loss than his own personal stats.

“I’m just trying to help the team,” Hall said. “It’s disappointing that we’ve dropped two  (games) so we just have to get back at it and worry about the next game and have a short memory.”

Kent State’s senior backcourt, Kris Brewer (2 points), Derek Jackson (10 points) and Devareaux Manley (19 points), shot 9-for-35 for a combined 31 points.

“At the end of the day, they were just a tougher team,” Manley said. “They out-fought us in this battle. They threw punches, and just like at their house, we wilted. That what I think got their momentum going: them being tougher than us and us not battling back.”

Manley, following Tuesday when he passed former Flash Randal Holt for the season three-point record, was unable to find his shot, going 4-for-18 from the field and made only two of his 12 three point attempts.  

“Dev’s competing; he’s missing some shots but he’s competing,” Senderoff said of Manley’s performance. “You go down with Dev 100 out of 100 times.”

The Flashes were able to hold the Bulls’ star junior forward Justin Moss to just six points and two rebounds, but Buffalo’s backcourt came up big, combining for 49 points.

“You’d think you’d have a pretty good chance to win,” Senderoff said of Moss’ performance. “But when (sophomore guard) Shannon Evans goes for 21 and Skeete 14 and hits the first four threes of the game and a freshman point guard (Lamonte Bearden) goes on the road and he has 14 (points) and only one turnover, (that’s) pretty good for a freshman on the road.”

Kent State began the week at the top of the conference, but after losing its last two games, they have now fallen behind Buffalo and Bowling Green (19-8, 11-5 MAC) in the MAC tournament seeding.

The Flashes travel to Bowling Green on Tuesday. Tip-off is at 7 p.m.

Contact Stephen Means II at [email protected].