Flashes’ lack of outside shooting could be critical down the stretch

Cody Erbacher

None of the shots were falling for the Kent State men’s basketball team Friday.

If the Flashes want to maintain a spot at the top of the Mid-American Conference, they’re going to need to make sure that type of performance doesn’t repeat itself.

Luckily, the shooting in Friday’s 73-66 loss against Drexel didn’t affect Kent State’s conference standing as the team took a break from conference play to compete in the ESPN BracketBuster game.

But the game will leave a seed of doubt in the player’s minds for the final stretches of the regular season.

Without a consistent perimeter shooting game, Kent State is forced to look to the post for answers.

Generally, junior forward Justin Greene is able to right the wrongs of the perimeter: shooting using his signature hook shots in the paint. But when the offense doesn’t hit their 3-point shots, the defense can focus on putting more pressure on Greene.

Against Drexel, Kent State shot 4-for-18 from behind the arc, giving Kent State an impossible catch-up game to play.

And Greene, who has received six MAC East Player of the Week awards this season, couldn’t respond to the bigger defenders who pressured him.

Greene recorded a sloppy 4-for-16 shooting performance from the field. He also struggled from the free-throw line as he only hit 3-of-7 shots.

After finishing the first half down 42-30, the Flashes kept fighting to cut into the lead. Unfortunately, crucial shot attempts from behind the arc that are normally successful, did not fall when the team needed a bucket.

Sophomore guard Randal Holt and junior guard Michael Porrini led the missed 3-pointers, shooting 1-for-10 from the 3-point line.

After missing four shots from beyond the arc to start the second half, Holt sank the duo’s lone 3-pointer cutting into Drexel’s lead 58-51.

With 5:55 remaining in the game, the shot, which capped off a 5-point Holt run, looked like it was the momentum boost Kent State needed to get back in the game.

But Drexel’s defense continued to force some bad shots, and the Dragons maintained a solid lead for the rest of regulation.

Contact Cody Erbacher at [email protected].