Men’s basketball falls to Akron

Chris Gates

Overcoming a 14-point halftime deficit wasn’t enough as the Kent State men’s basketball team lost to Akron 68-54 at James A. Rhodes Arena this afternoon.

The Flashes (8-11, 1-3 Mid-American Conference) trailed 39-25 at halftime, but opened the second half on a 23-8 run to take a 48-47 lead – their first of the game. Anthony Simpson provided a spark for the team with 16 points and 16 rebounds.

“(Anthony) really came out tonight and stepped it up,” senior guard Jordan Mincy said. “We’re proud that he showed he can bounce back from anything.”

Simpson scored 11 of his points in the second half along with nine rebounds, which helped Kent State climb back in the game in the second half.

However, Akron answered with a 9-0 run of its own and took back the lead for good. Kent State managed just six points in the final 8:16 of the game.

“We had four good looks, open shots by guys that had gotten us the lead (by) hitting some shots,” Kent State coach Geno Ford said. “They just didn’t fall.”

The Flashes dug themselves an early hole in the first half by shooting just 27.6 percent from the field. Akron had no such shooting struggles and capitalized on double-figures in scoring from sophomore Brett McKnight (29 points) and junior Chris McKnight (11).

The loss keeps Kent State in last place in the MAC East. The team returns home for only its third home game in January on Tuesday against Eastern Michigan.

Contact principal sports reporter Chris Gates

at [email protected].