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BG Falcon Media

The BG News
BG24 Newscast
November 30, 2023

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Smackin’ Akron

With one week to go in the regular season, the Bowling Green basketball team is right where it need to be.

The Falcons are two games away from clinching the third seed in next week’s Mid-American Conference tournament and the only remaining first-round bye after defeating Akron 76-46 Saturday at Anderson Arena.

The win, combined with Ohio’s loss to Kent State, gave the Falcons a one-game lead on Ohio and reduces BG’s magic number to two for the third seed. Any combination of BG wins and Ohio losses equalling two clinches the third seed for the Falcons. BG finishes the season at home against Buffalo Wednesday and at Ohio Saturday. Ohio plays Toledo before facing BG.

The win was a bit of revenge exacted on Akron (9-18, 5-11 MAC) for an overtime loss last month in which BG blew an eight-point lead late in regulation. The Falcons (21-6, 11-5 MAC) traded punches with Akron early before pulling away by the midway point of the half. Their lead hit double figures to stay with just over seven minutes to play and they were doubled up on Akron 42-21 at the half.

The story of the first half for BG was Brandon Pardon. Picking up the slack for a misfiring Keith McLeod, Pardon erupted for 13 first half-points en route to a game-high 21. He shot 3-for-5 from beyond the three-point arc. BG, in large part, rode three-pointers to their halftime cushion. Along with Pardon’s three, Ryan was 3-for-3 from beyond the arc and McLeod 2-for-4.

“At halftime I told my coaches this was kind of a fake lead,” BG coach Dan Dakich said. A lot of it was due to the fact that we threw in four at the shot clock buzzer.”

Dakich emptied out his bench early. Only Kris Gerken did not see action in the first half. Even with the work load spread among 12 players, only six scored. The frontcourt was downright anemic in the first-half scorebook. Brent Klassen’s six led the BG big men.

However, even the BG frontcourt didn’t have the problems putting the ball in the basket Akron did. Andy Hipsher and Nick Meyers tied for the Zips’ team lead with six first-half points. It didn’t get much better for Akron in the second half. Hipsher finished the game with team-high 10 points on 4-for-5 shooting and the Zips shot 33.3 percent from the floor for the game.

” We dribbled ourselves into oblivion,” Akron coach Dan Hipsher said. “You have to work for what you get against a good team, and we got impatient and struggled with the fact that Akron was playing Bowling Green and not individuals playing individuals.”

Josh Almanson joined Pardon on a scoring binge in the second half. Almanson was perfect, 4-for-4 from the floor as he score nine points in the second half for 11 in the game. Ryan was the only other Falcon to finish in double figures, with 12 all on threes.

BG finished the game shooting 55.3 percent from the field. Their 66-35 lead with 6:39 to play in the game was their largest. Every Falcon saw action in the game and only three did not score.

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