BUFFALO, NY - Buffalo will host Kent State on Wednesday night at Alumni Arena, in search of its first conference win of the season and an end to three-game losing streak. The Bulls are also looking to avoid their first 0-3 start to MAC play since the 2002-03 season after dropping a disappointing result in the last game out.
The Bulls are 5-11 overall and 0-2 in the MAC after losing to Miami (OH), 58-57, on Saturday night. Javon McCrea led the Bulls with 19 points and 11 rebounds - his fourth double-double of the year - and Cameron Downing pitched in 14 points of his own.
Leading by six at halftime, Miami opened the second half on a 21-8 run to lead 54-33 with 10:20 remaining. However, that would be the last field goal the RedHawks would make, allowing the Bulls to make a dramatic run. Jarryn Skeete scored a quick five points on back-to back possessions that cut the lead to 16. UB then looked to its post players as Downing (9) and McCrea (6) combined to scored the team's next 15 points. Auraum Nuiriankh grabbed an offensive rebound off a missed free throw and laid it in to cut the Miami advantage to 56-55 with 2:01 left. UB finally clawed ahead took a 57-56 lead with 1:01 left, but the bounce of the ball escaped them in the closing out of the game, as Miami hit two free throws with six seconds left to go up by one and hold off the near-miraculous comeback.
Kent State is 10-6 overall and 1-1 in the MAC. The Golden Flashes are coming off a 61-47 win at Ball State on Saturday. The Golden Flashes are led by Chris Evans who is averaging 16.6 points and 7.3 rebounds per game. Evans and fellow senior Randal Holt (13.4 ppg), combine to average 30.0 points per game, accounting for a little less than half of the team's total scoring per game. The team has had a season similar to Buffalo's - losing three of its top players from a season ago and looking for new faces to step up and fill in for their production.
The team has heated up recently, with five wins in the past six games. Against Ball State on Saturday, Kent State took a 15 point lead at halftime but allowed the Cardinals to get within one before pulling away late in the game. The Golden Flashes called Evans and Holt from the bench in the game for a rare non-start for the duo, but it paid off. Kent State's bench put up 45 points to Ball State's nine.
Kent State leads the all-time series, 26-8. Kent State won the last meeting, 76-71, at the M.A.C. Center last season. UB has won the last four meetings at Alumni Arena, though, with three of those wins coming by double-digits.
Tonight's game will be broadcasted on SportsTime Ohio and ESPN3.com, and fans can also listen in to Josh Whetzel's call on 1230 AM "The Breeze." Tip off is scheduled for 7:00 pm, and the ZOOperstars will be providing the halftime entertainment. Tickets are still available at the ticket office, or by calling 1-800-UBTHERE.