Front court comes up big to lead men’s basketball over BGSU

Mason Lawlor Sports Reporter

The Kent State men’s basketball team escaped the Stroh Center with a 71-67 win over Bowling Green State University on Tuesday night. The Flashes improve to 11-5 on the season and 8-4 in the MAC.  

Both teams got off to sloppy starts, with Bowling Green’s all-time leading scorer Justin Turner making only one field goal in the first half. Both teams gave up 5 turnovers within the first 10 minutes of regulation.  

With the Falcons finding success on the perimeter, the Flashes leaned on their big men, including senior forward Tervell Beck and junior forward Gabe O’Neal.  

The two combined for 28 points down low, dominating the outmatched Bowling Green frontcourt. Beck led the Flashes in scoring with 18 and went 7-13 from the field, helping the Flashes win the points in the paint battle.   

Another dominant inside performance came from senior forward Danny Pippen, who led the Flashes in rebounds with 11 and scored 16 points.

Sophomore guard Giovanni Santiago ran the offense, giving out three assists and scoring six points of his own while also finding a block and two steals.

The Falcons’ Turner took charge in the second half, putting up 16 points over the last 20 minutes of play. However, with only 2:16 left in regulation and a chance to tie the game at 69, Turner missed a crucial one-in-one free throw.  

Pippen then came up clutch with a turnaround layup off an inbounds pass, giving the Flashes a four point lead to finish off the victory.  

Jeremiah Hernandez provided a well-needed boost off the bench, scoring 11 points in 27 minutes of action. Hernandez left the court late in the second half after a hard hit to the face.  

Junior guard Malique Jacobs showed up all over the court, leading the Flashes with five assists and grabbing a team-high four offensive rebounds. Jacobs also scored six points and grabbed two steals.

Kent State will set their sights on Northern Illinois, who comes to the M.A.C. Center this Saturday with a 2-10 record. Tipoff is scheduled for 2 p.m. 

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