Rockets Take Lift Off Against Bobcats in Second Half

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Toledo Rockets guard Mikaela Boyd pulled up at the top of key and hit a jumper to end the half.

That shot ended a whopping 8:41 scoreless stretch that saw the Ohio Bobcats go on a 17-0 run.

That shot then proceeded to a 13-0 run by the Rockets (11-5, 2-2 MAC) that saw them recapture the lead for good and pulled away for a 75-57 win over the Bobcats (8-7, 2-2 MAC) Wednesday night at Savage Arena.

These two teams met back on Dec. 31 where the Bobcats picked up a 78-61 win in the Convocation Center that saw the Rockets turn the ball over 19 times that led to 22 points for the Bobcats.

Wednesday night, the first half was the same story. The Rockets turned the ball over 14 times – nine times in the second quarter that saw the Rockets go ice cold from the field. The Bobcats used the turnovers and smothering defense to go on a 17-0 run and take a 10-point lead.

The Bobcats thought they had the Rockets where they wanted them again. The offense was on a roll, the defense was on par and the Bobcats were holding the Rockets’ big three of Boyd, Kaayla McIntyre and Jay-Ann Bravo-Harriot relatively in check.

Then in a matter of two minutes and change, everything fell apart.

The Rockets hit their first five shots of the second half and made the Bobcat 17-0 run feel like a distant memory. The Rockets went on to double the Bobcats in points in the second half (56-28).

Outside of the gigantic surge in the second quarter, it was an inconsistent shooting night for the Bobcats.

Bobcats guard Dominique Doseck, who exploded for a season-high 27 points in the teams’ first meeting, never got going in this one. She finished with just five points on 2-10 shooting.

The Rockets also took away the Bobcats top two scoring options as guards Amani Burke and Cierra Hooks never found their footing in this game. The two combined for 20 points and six of the team’s 10 turnovers. Gabby Burris led all Bobcats with 14 points.

As the Bobcats couldn’t get their stars going, the Rockets got McIntrye going. She had nine of her 11 points in the second half. The trio of McIntrye, Boyd and Bravo-Harriot put a stamp on the second half as they scored 39 of the team’s 75 points.

Boyd had herself quite the evening with a monstrous double-double (17 points, 18 rebounds). She was two assists shy of a triple-double.

She was a force on the boards – something that the Bobcats have struggled with all year being undersized. Boyd led the team with 18 rebounds and the Rockets more than doubled the Bobcats (53-24) in rebounds.

So even though the Rockets turned the ball over 23 times – 12 via steals and lost the points-off-turnovers battle (25-11), they were able to overcome that because they smoked the Bobcats in second-chance points (18-2).

The Bobcats inability to keep the Rockets off the glass and keep up with their hot shooting in the second half were simply too much to overcome for a team that has its good and bad days on the offensive side of the floor.

The Bobcats will hope to narrow the gap on the battle of the boards when they travel to Kalamazoo to take on the Western Michigan Broncos on Saturday with tip-off set for 2 p.m.