Kent State wins final nonconference game

Jeff Russ

Jeff Russ

In its final tune up before conference play, the Kent State men’s basketball team defeated Texas A&M-Corpus Christi 61-50.

The Flashes jumped out to a lead of as many ten in the first half. Senior forward Haminn Quaintance was the catalyst of that early lead, scoring 13 points and grabbing seven rebounds in the half while spending a lot of that time guarding 7-0 senior center Chris Daniels. The Flashes did a good job of attacking the basket on Daniels, forcing him into early foul trouble.

“We’re just running our sets and executing,” Kent State coach Jim Christian said. “When a great player like Daniels gets into foul trouble you want to go at him and hopes he gets another.”

For the game, Quaintance finished with 13 points, 14 rebounds and 5 blocks, one away from the tying the school record, despite playing most of the second half with a sore shoulder following a collision between him and Daniels. Although nothing serious, Quaintance did feel pain after the game.

“I don’t know who I hit but I remember I heard a crack,” he said. “It’s not separated, at least it doesn’t feel separated.”

Christian said Quaintance is ok and injuries happen when you’ve played this many games.

“We’ve played 15 games, and so has everybody else,” he said. “There is a lot of banged up teams and that’s what happens. There’s a lot of bumps and bruises and you played hard that’s what happens.”

After scoring 23 last year, Quaintance and the Flashes held Daniels to zero points in the first half and only 11 points in the game.

“Everybody was trash-talking me because he scored (23) against us last season,” Quaintance said. “I decided to go up and try to keep him low and contain him.”

The Islanders cut the lead to four just before half, but junior guard Al Fisher hit a last-second layup off the glass to end the first half.

In the second half the Flashes were able to take control of the game with leads as large as 15 with five minutes left to play. When the Islanders would cut it down close, the Flashes would hit a bucket that would put the game away.

Game Notes

Presenting BP

When Quaintance went to the bench with injury, 6-10 sophomore forward Brandon Parks came off the bench to score 6 points and grab 3 rebounds. He came into the game only averaging 1 point per game. Christian said he wanted to get Parks into more games. “Brandon’s worked really hard,” he said. “I really wanted to play him the other night against Buffalo but it wouldn’t be fair to him. If you practice hard you’ll play around here.”

Starting Singletary

For the third straight game, sophomore guard Chris Singletary was in the starting lineup. He scored eight points and grabbed eight rebounds in the victory. Last season, he came into the starting lineup later in the season. “Chris is a guy that gets his hand on a lot of balls, Christian said. “When he goes in there and rebounds it helps our team.”

Contact sports editor Jeff Russ at [email protected]