Men’s basketball wins MAC Tournament opener

DKS Sports Staff

The Kent State men’s basketball team made another late comeback to defeat Northern Illinois 64-61 in the first round of the Mid-American Conference Tournament this afternoon at Quicken Loans Arena.

The Flashes (19-13, 10-6 Mid-American Conference) trailed 56-48 with seven minutes to go, but they went on a 14-2 run over the next five minutes to take a 62-58 lead.

“I thought our kids hung in there and

battled and believed we were going to find a way in spite of trailing the majority of the game,” Kent State coach Geno Ford said.

Senior forward Julian Sullinger hit two free throws to put the Flashes ahead 60-58 with 2:45 remaining. Senior guard Al Fisher scored on a layup and jumper down the stretch to keep the Flashes in the lead.

Fisher scored 25 points, including 20 in the first half.

Junior center Brandon Parks added six points, scoring back-to-back baskets during the 14-2 run to tie the game at 58.

“It’s funny how you can only have six points and four boards, and I really feel like (Parks) won the game for us,” Ford said. “Those were huge plays.”

The Flashes will take on Buffalo Thursday in the quarterfinals of the MAC Tournament. The game will begin at approximately 2:30 p.m.