Kent State women show Akron the door

By Don Dreger Record-Courier assistant sports edit Published:

It happened early and often. The University of Akron women's basketball team turned the ball over 21 times in the first half and Kent State seized the extra opportunities to grab a 69-37 Mid-American Conference win over the Zips Saturday at the M.A.C. Center. The home win streak climbs to 37 games and Kent State's record goes to 9-5 overall and 4-0 in the conference. The Golden Flashes remain in a tie for first place in the East Division with Bowling Green. Meanwhile, Akron dropped to 2-13 and 0-4, holding down the basement in the MAC. The Flashes' defense was awesome in the first half. From 18:36 until 6:47, Akron was held scoreless as Kent State ran out to a 26-7 lead. Akron had more turnovers (13) than shot attempts (12). Halfway through the second half, Akron had continued its propensity to mishandle the ball and had accumulated 33 turnovers. By game's end, Akron had 38 turnovers to 44 shots. "I was very pleased with our defense today," said Kent State coach Bob Lindsay. "It was the dominating factor that allowed us to win by 30. Akron is struggling. They aren't in any sort of rhythm. They do have a couple of decent players who aren't producing right now. "Offensively, we were good in places and sloppy in others. However, that has been the story this season. When you have a sterling rotation of seven players, things like that happen. "We try to work through those possessions that see us throw the ball away," continued Lindsay. "I understand some of that, especially when we have two or three freshmen on the floor. But I was happy with our balanced scoring. We had a positive assist-to-turnover ratio (23-21). We've got to get better in holding our turnovers down." Kent State had a balanced scoring attack, with Julie Studer, Carrie Nance and Andrea Csaszar all scoring 12 points. Lori Krezeczowski added 11, and Morgan O'Hara had a career-high 10 points and four steals. Krezeczowski had a career-high nine assists and Csaszar pulled down a career-best 13 rebounds. Julie McDivitt, former Windham high school standout and All-MAC volleyball player for Akron, was high-point scorer for the Zips with eight. Akron didn't start preseason All-MAC selection Cheryl Bowles, hoping to bring her off the bench to get her in a better flow than she has been in the past couple games. But the Kent State defense denied her the ball and forced numerous turnovers. Bowles was held to three points. "We had so little offense today that any mention of it is a gross overstatement," said Akron coach Roxanne Allen. "When you have three points from your best player, things aren't going well offensively for us." Kent State had a 33-14 lead at halftime as the Flashes moved the ball around well and had a balanced attack. Studer had eight of her points in the paint, a factor that continued the whole game. In fact, Kent State outscored Akron 32-12 in the paint. However, the Flashes did have a slump where they only scored five points in five minutes. "It's hard when things go wrong, but you have to stay focused and keep your head in the game," said Nance. "You have to play good, hard defense until things go your way." In the second half, Kent State played just as aggressively and easily kept the game under control. The referees called a loose game, but both teams held their composure and didn't let emotions ruin the day. Lindsay said he expects to have Lisa Wube back in a matter of days (bruised arm), and Katalin Kollat (stress fracture) will start to practice in a week. Kent State will host Miami next Wednesday.

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