The Eastern Michigan University men’s basketball team (6-21, 3-11 Mid-American Conference) traveled to Kent, Ohio on Friday, Feb. 17 for their second matchup of the season with Kent State (22-5, 12-2) in a must-win scenario for the Eagles as they sit two spots behind the eighth and final spot for the MAC tournament. The Eagles fell short to the Golden Flashes, 81-54.
The Eagles trail their all-time series with Kent State, 35-49, and have dropped six in a row in the series overall. The last time that EMU picked up a win on the road in Kent, Ohio was on Feb. 1, 2010, when the Eagles knocked off the Golden Flashes, 62-59.
Sophomore Emoni Bates led the Eagles offensively as he notched his third career double-double with 15 points, all of which came in the second half, and 11 rebounds. With his 15-point performance, Bates’ season point total is now at 520 points, making it the fifth-highest total for a sophomore in EMU history as he passed former Eagle, Brian Tolbert.
Sophomore Kevin-David Rice added to the scoring attack as he finished with nine points off the bench, while freshman Orlando Lovejoy added seven points.
The Eagles did some damage on the offensive glass as they grabbed 13 offensive rebounds and turned those into 12 second chance points. They also outrebounded Kent State, 35-32.
Defensively, the Eagles forced 15 Kent State turnovers and turned those into 15 points on the offensive end.
In the first half, Kent State jumped out to an early 2-0 lead with 19:47 left to play and would not give it up. Kent State’s Sincere Carry would pour in 12 points in the half as the Eagles found themselves trailing, 41-25, entering halftime.
The second half wasn’t much of an improvement on EMU’s end as Kent State would produce a 9-0 run to extend a 17-point lead to 26 points. As the Golden Flashes outscored EMU 40-29 in the second half, Kent State would take the win over the Eagles, 81-54.
Next up, the Eagles will return home to Ypsilanti, Michigan for the first of its final two home games of the season with rival Western Michigan coming to the George Gervin GameAbove Center on Tuesday, Feb. 21. Tipoff for that matchup is scheduled for 7 p.m. and will be streamed live on ESPN+.
For more information on the EMU men’s basketball team, you can listen to “TheBlockE Podcast” weekly for more in-depth analyses, statistics, and more.
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