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Short-handed Falcons no match for hot-shooting Bobcats

Ohio makes 18 3-pointers in 96-72 blowout

Lonnie McMillan Photo
BOWLING GREEN – Short-handed Bowling Green was no match for hot-shooting Ohio on Saturday as the Bobcats came away with a 96-72 victory at the Stroh Center.

Already missing players due to the injuries, four Bowling Green players – three starters and a top reserve – were suspended earlier this week.

Led by Jaaron Simmons’ season-high 23 points and five assists, Ohio (13-6, 5-3 Mid-American Conference) built a double-digit first-half lead and added to it after the break. Kenny Kaminski went 7 of 10 on 3-pointers and scored 22 points, while Jordan Dartis was 4 of 6 from downtown and scored 16 points.

"Offensively we're in a good way right now,” Ohio coach Saul Phillips said. “We really are. The ball is really moving. We're playing out of our base offense, and we've got things we can do in special situations. When the majority of the game you're just running your base, everybody gets touches. We got good looks today."

Freshman guard Dylan Frye scored 24 points to lead the Falcons (8-13, 2-6 MAC). Rodrick Caldwell added 13 points, though he was just 3 of 12 from the field.

Down 8-5 early after a Frye 3-pointer, Ohio went on a 14-0 run beginning with a Simmons 3-pointer at the 16:47 mark. Simmons’ layup gave the Bobcats the lead for good, and he added another 3-pointer after that.

"We just feel back to normal," Simmons said. "Everybody is used to seeing us make a lot of threes, score a lot of points and stuff like that. It just came to me early. I saw a lot of open gaps. My shot was feeling pretty good. I just started attacking from the jump.

Kaminski followed with consecutive treys to cap off the run and make it 19-8.

“I wouldn't say I necessarily needed it, but it feels great shooting that good," Kaminski said. "Being an Ohio guy, there were a lot of guys in the crowd today that were on me pretty good. Having to not say anything about how I'm playing and just play felt great."

Lonnie McMillan Photo
The Bobcats pushed their advantage to 41-23 with four minutes left in the first half on a Dartis 3-pointer, but the Falcons fought back with 10 straight points by Frey before another Dartis trey gave Ohio a 44-33 advantage at halftime.

Ohio outscored Bowling Green 23-11 over the first eight minutes of the second half to go up 67-41, and the lead reached 28 at 75-47 on a Gavin Block 3-poiner with 8:51 remaining. The biggest lead was 91-62 with two minutes left following a Sam Frayer free throw.

The Bobcats shot 53.5 percent, making a season-high 18 3-pointers in 35 attempts (51.4 percent). But they made just 2 of 7 free throws. The Falcons shot just 33.3 percent, including 20.6 percent on 3-pointers, avoiding an even bigger blowout by making 21 of 31 free throws.

Suspended players included starting guards Zack Denny, the team’s leading scorer, Antwon Lillard and Ismail Ali and backup forward Rasheed Worrell.

Both of team’s available starters, forwards Wes Alcegaire and Demajeo Wiggins, struggled. Alcegaire was just 2 of 14 for four points, while Wiggins was 1 of 5 from the field and 5 of 12 from the foul line for seven points, though he did have 12 rebounds.

Malik Hluchoweckyj started and played nearly twice as many minutes in the game (29) as he had in all of the previous games combined (15). He had nine points and nine rebounds.

Bowling Green also got a boost from a pair of football players added to the basketball roster in recent days. Tight end Hunter Folkertsma had six points in five minutes, and wide receiver Teo Redding scored five points in five minutes. They combined to go 3 of 4 from the field and 4 of 4 at the foul line.

Ohio freshman Jason Carter had eight points and seven rebounds, while fellow freshman Rodney Culver scored 12 points and had four boards.

It was just the Bobcats’ second win at Bowling Green since 2007 and improved them to 3-1 in MAC road games this season.

The Bobcats take on Western Michigan at 6 p.m. Tuesday at University Arena in Kalamazoo.

Additional Coverage:
Photos  (BobcatAttack.com)
Box score  (Ohio Bobcats.com)

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