Cleveland, OH (WKZO) – Kent State scored the first points of the game and never looked back as they led from start to finish, eliminating the Western Michigan men’s basketball team from the MAC Tournament with a 76-72 victory Thursday night.
“This is a tough one to take”, Coach Steve Hawkins said following the game. “This game pretty much epitomized our entire year. We didn’t make this easy on ourselves at times.”
The Broncos trailed by as much as 12 in first half but the cut the deficit to 5, 35-30 after the first 20 minutes of play.
The beginning of the 2nd half saw Kent go on a 17-7 run and eventually increased their lead to 19 with 8:02 remaining in the game.
After Matt Stainbrook was ejected for elbowing Kent St. guard Michael Porrini, the Broncos responded by going on a 15-2 run but were never able to get the game closer than 3 points.
2011 MAC Player of the Year Justin Greene had 23 points for the Golden Flashes, who will now play Akron on Friday in semifinals of the MAC Tournament.
Demetrius Ward topped the scoring charts with 16 points for the Broncos.
While a postseason tournament bid isn’t out of the question, it is unlikely the Broncos will get an invite and most likely the loss against Kent State should be the final game for the Broncos this season.
GAME NOTES: 5 Broncos finished with double figures in points. Ward (16), Whitfield (14), Hutchenson (13), Douglas (11) Stainbrook (10)…Douglas had 8 assists for Western…The Broncos were outrebounded by Kent State 34-30…Kent had 44 points in the paint. WMU had 28.