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The BG News
BG24 Newscast
November 30, 2023

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Falcons win with defense

All teams have their own personal style and blowing out Mid-American Conference teams at home has become the style for the BGSU women’s basketball team as of late. The squad rolled over Ohio University 86-59 on Saturday after their Wednesday night rout of Northern Illinois.

Ohio kept the tempo high throughout the game, causing both teams to commit excessive turnovers and fouls. The squads combined for a total of 44 turnovers and 50 personal fouls.

“It was a really up tempo game,” BG’s Ali Mann said. “They like to really pressure the ball. It caused more possessions for us to have turnovers.”

Both the Bobcats and the Falcons are proven conference scoring powers and the Bobcats tried to slow BG down with a full court press. The Falcon offense quickly found ways to break the press.

Mann led the Falcon offense with a game high 19 points and 10 rebounds. Liz Honegger continued her own offensive dominance with 15 points and 12 rebounds, while Carin Horne and Kate Achter added 12 and 17 points respectively.

Defensively, BG lucked out when OU’s leading scorer Kristian Kirkpatrick and defensive power Erin Isbell fouled out midway into the second half. Isbell scored 13 points before fouling out and had 2 blocks and 2 steals. Both coaches agreed that had Kirkpatrick stayed in the game, the outcome may have been very different.

“It certainly hurt us when Kris and Erin both fouled out, no doubt about it,” OU head coach Lynn Bria said. “I thought, in BG’s credit, they did an outstanding job.”

On defense, Tene Lewis was once again all over the court for BG, ending up with six points, seven assists, two blocks and three steals. Her tenacity on defense frequently sparked offensive breaks for the Falcons.

“We pride ourselves on being the best defensive team in the MAC. Fifty-nine points [allowed], that’s pretty good for us,” Mann said.

“[BG] switched up their defense a lot. They did a good job of kind of keeping us off balance,” Bria said.

Rebounding became a key battle in the game with BG out-rebounding OU 55 to 37. Head coach Curt Miller said that keeping the Bobcats off of the offensive glass was a key in the Falcons’ victory.

The fans played a sixth man role in the Falcons’ win. Anderson Arena was filled with 1,625 fans wearing orange for the ‘orange out.’ Pre-Title IX letter winners and coaches showed up to cheer the team to victory.

“Tonight the crowd was great,” Miller said. “We’re 6-1 at home and we’ve proven we can win here and that it’s a tough place to play. We’ve had a real good year at home.”

The past two blowout wins have served as a boost of confidence for the Falcons as they prepare to compete on the road. Both Mann and Miller have noticed the increased confidence in the team.

“It’s like night and day. We are a completely new team. We are just playing really good basketball. It’s exciting,” Mann said.

“They’re a quiet, confident group. I love their confidence and it’s fun to coach when they’re that confident,” Miller said.

The team will need that confidence as they go on the road to face conference opponent Ball State Tuesday, February 8.

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