Updated Mon, Mar 10, 2014 10:17 pm
On a day when Ohio set the record for most 3-pointers in a season, 810, the land beyond the arc could not have been much harsher to the visiting ‘Cats.
Ohio’s (9-21, 4-15) 7-of-39 performance from 3-point land contributed to its third loss to Toledo (15-15, 10-9) of the season, this time to the tune of 61-44.
The loss puts an end to head coach Bob Boldon’s first season in Athens and marks the second consecutive year in which the ‘Cats were bounced in the first round of the Mid-American conference tournament.
While Ohio struggled from downtown, Toledo overcame a sluggish start to light up the scoreboard from all over the court. Three Elena de Alfredo treys broke open the contest midway through the first half, extending the lead to double-digits and they never looked back.
Ohio’s first half point total of 14 was the lowest opening half mark of the season.
De Alfredo and her teammates finished 6-of-15 from beyond the arc. The Rockets took advantage of sluggish interior defense from the ‘Cats, opening up kick-out opportunities for several waiting Toledo sharp-shooters.
As a whole, Toledo played a complete game. Four different players chalked up at least eight points with Andola Dortch leading the way with 13 points, six assists and four rebounds.
Boldon cited slow rotations and broken down communication as a few reasons for the loss.
“We gave them a couple of easy shots and it really got them going,” Boldon said.
Toledo’s ball movement was sharp, efficient and was quicker than Ohio’s man defense. On the other end, Ohio’s ball movement was streaky at best. Some possessions yielded a lot of movement from the ‘Cats, creating open shots while other possessions saw ball-watching and forced shots at the end of the shot clock.
No matter the possession, it was just not Ohio’s night from the field. The ‘Cats shot an abysmal 27 percent from the field. An early Kiyanna Black 3-point attempt, where she had at least 15 feet of space, clanked off of the iron. The shot was a microcosm of Ohio’s inability to get any shots to the bottom of the net.
Boldon was quick to give praise to a stifling Toledo 2-3 zone, but admitted that it came down to poor execution throughout.
With the win, Toledo will meet the Western Michigan Broncos on Wednesday at Quicken Loans Arena in the second round of the MAC tournament.
For the ‘Cats, a season of some improvements comes to an end and an off-season of adjustments lies ahead. Fortunately for the ‘Cats, all but two seniors, who did not register a minute, will return to Athens next season.
Boldon insisted that there is an area in which every one of his players can improve and is looking forward to improving in the off-season.