Updated Tue, Feb 5, 2013 12:05 pm
The Bobcats lost their first Mid-American Conference matchup on the road to the Akron Zips, 86-72.
The Bobcats’ big men got destroyed inside, being outrebounded, 39-21. Akron also received strong play from their trio of Zeke Marshall, Alex Abreu and Demetrius Treadwell.
Marshall finished perfect from the field, hitting eight shots for 17 points and pulled down 12 boards. Treadwell was second on the team with 10 rebounds and recorded a double-double with 15 points. Abreu had one of the best games of his career with 21 points and nine assists.
The Bobcats look to bounce back this week against two conference foes, Ball State and Bowling Green.
Ohio travels to Muncie, In. Wednesday in their fourth straight road game. The Cardinals are 8-12 overall and 2-6 in the MAC this season. They’ve lost six of their last seven and are 1-4 against MAC East Division opponents.
The player to watch out for on Ball State is 6-foot-9 JUCO transfer Majok Majok. The junior leads the MAC in rebounding with 10.4 a game. The next highest is Western Michigan’s Shayne Whittington with 8.2. Majok’s rebounding numbers are also 13th best in the nation.
Majok’s standout game came against Akron this season where the 245-pounder banged with 7-foot Marshall for 26 points and 13 rebounds.
The Cardinals are not a good three-point shooting team, posting a .323 percentage from deep this season. Their top two scorers come from the guard position. Jauwan Scaife and Jesse Berry combine for 25.9 points per game and play a majority of the minutes for Ball State. There are some qualities that they lack from the guard position that Ohio can take advantage of when they enter Muncie.
Neither shoots a high percentage from the field (.368 for Scaife, .394 for Berry), and they are better scorers than contributors. As a team, the Cardinals only average 12.3 assists a game and zero guards average above three per game.
The Bobcats will return home for the first time in three weeks to take on Bowling Green.
The Falcons are 8-13 overall and 3-5 in the conference this season. They’ve been an up-and-down team, losing by 11 to Robert Morris and Michigan State and beating Kent State by 15.
Bowling Green’s success typically rides on the play of two players: Jordon Crawford and A’uston Calhoun.
Crawford is a 5-foot-6 energizer bunny that loves to shoot the basketball, even if he’s not feeling it that day. His 16.0 points per game are fifth best in the MAC, and his 316 field goal attempts are best in the conference and tied for 33rd in the nation.
He has hit 39.6% of his attempts this season and only 31.7% from deep.
He has the capability to go off at anytime, contributing 20 points and seven assists against a guard-oriented Toledo team, but can also go ice cold from the field, as he shot 1-of-11 from the field for five points against Akron.
The Falcons’ other scorer comes a foot taller in Calhoun, who is sixth in the MAC with 15.5 points per game. Calhoun shoots a moderately better percentage from the field (.439) and from three (.349) than his point guard and has scored in double-digits in seven of the Falcons’ eight conference games so far.
At 6-foot-7, 234 pounds, Calhoun will be difficult to stop down low for the Bobcats.
Ohio will tipoff Wednesday’s game at Ball State at 7:00 p.m. The Bobcats will be looking for their seventh conference win of the season. They’ll return home for Sibs weekend on Saturday to take on Bowling Green at 2 p.m.