KSU women’s basketball brings strong shooting to beat Broncos

Photo courtesy of Zolton Cohen.

Photo courtesy of Zolton Cohen.

Matt Lofgren

Shooting just one of 16 from beyond the arch and entering the final four minutes against Western Michigan Wednesday night, the Kent State women’s basketball team showed that it’s never too late to buck the trend.

With 4:14 left, the Flashes trailed 56-51. They could choose to fold or rise to the occasion. On the Broncos’ court, the Flashes rose to the challenge.

In the last four minutes, the Flashes (5-12, 4-3 MAC) sealed the deal on its first road victory of the season and third win in a row by sinking three clutch three pointers en route to the 67-62 victory.

“[Coach Bob Lindsay] said at halftime ‘we are settling for threes and we’re rushing them. It’s not in the flow of the offense,’” assistant coach Lori Bodnar said. “‘You’re going to get them in the second half. I want you to go out there thinking you’re going to make every single shot that you take.’”

Not only did the Flashes come out with the mentality that they could hit every shot they took, but they nearly did, shooting an unheard-of 64 percent from the floor. In the second half, the Flashes had evolved into a contender.

“It’s really rewarding to see the games going our way finally,” junior Tamzin Barroilhet said. “We definitely struggled in the first half of our conference season, but we are finally seeing our hard work paying off. And the more we experience these close games and being able to take over in those crucial moments is going to help us in the future.”

Barroilhet exploded in the second half and finished the night with a career high 22 points in the game. Junior forward Diamon Beckford finished with 19 and freshmen guard Itziar Llobet added 14 and seven boards.

The three point shot is a big part of the Flashes arsenal, and for most of the game, it appeared the Broncos had taken that away from the team. However, their strong collective mindset proved that when they needed points the most, they could get them.

“I think we needed to find our rhythm,” Barroilhet said. “We kind of lost track of that in the first half, and we definitely let things come to us instead of forcing shots. That’s when shots started falling down. We never gave up and knew we were going to win this game, and we knew had the capabilities. We just kept pushing and our plays were working.”

Turnovers were the largest reason the Broncos hung around. The Flashes committed 21 turnovers that Western Michigan turned into 21 points.

Wednesday night’s win comes as a big milestone in the Flashes season so far. In several games this year, the team came so close to a win but just couldn’t pull it off. Having a game go right for a team against a quality opponent can go a long way.

“It’s a little bittersweet,” Bodnar said. “We’ve been so close and we finally come back and get one. I can’t say how proud I am of this team. You see them getting better and better. We were down and it’s back and forth in the game and they made some big plays and made some big stops to win this game.”

The Flashes will hit the road again and travel to Northern Illinois Saturday for a 2:30 p.m. tipoff against the Huskies.  


Contact Matt Lofgren at [email protected] .