Ohio guard Erica Johnson was the best layer on the floor as she led Ohio to 69-67 win over Kent State on Feb. 23, 2019. (Bryan Kurp/WOUB)

Ohio Women’s Basketball: Bobcats survive late Kent State surge; pick up another road win

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KENT, Ohio – With 49 seconds remaining in the game, Ohio head coach Bob Boldon called a timeout.  The crowd at the M.A.C. Center was electric after the Golden Flashes came back from a 16-point deficit to tie the game.  Off the ensuing inbound, Amani Burke drove along the baseline and banked in the go-ahead shot.

Kent State had one chance left, but Gabby Burris blocked Megan Carter’s shot with two seconds left.

Despite the late comeback from the Golden Flashes, Ohio (22-3, 11-3 MAC) came away with a 69-67 road win against Kent State (15-10, 8-6 MAC) Saturday afternoon in their first game off the bye week.

“I thought the first half looked good,” Bob Boldon said.  “In the first half, we looked like a team that just had a bye week and in the second half, we didn’t.”

The Bobcats shot 40 percent from the field with ten three-pointers.  Erica Johnson led Ohio with a double-double — 24 points and 12 rebounds.

“She was great,” Boldon said of Johnson.  “She had it going right from the beginning.  She came in like she should’ve come in, with a bit of an edge to her.  She was aggressive right off the bat.”

Ohio head coach Bob Boldon (122 career wins at Ohio) is now just 2 wins away from breaking the all-time record at Ohio. (Bryan Kurp/WOUB)
Ohio guard CeCe Hook's big first half helped Ohio race out to early lead. (Bryan Kurp/WOUB)
Ohio guard Dom Doseck hopes to end her senior year with a MAC title. (Bryan Kurp/WOUB)

CeCe Hooks added 15 points and Burke had 14 points for the Bobcats.  Defensively, Ohio held the Golden Flashes to 34 percent and forced 13 first half turnovers.

The Bobcats started the game on a 12-2 run and held a 22-14 lead at the end of the first quarter.  Behind Hooks’ nine second quarter points, the Bobcats went to the locker room with a 46-36 lead.  Hooks led Ohio with 13 points at the half.

After three quarters, it looked like the Bobcats were going to cruise to a victory as they led by a dozen, but like the game when these teams met earlier in the season, Kent State made a fourth quarter comeback.

“(Ohio) has been comfortable playing with leads, and to a point where they play too comfortable,” Boldon said of his team.

The Golden Flashes came out in the fourth shooting the ball well — The Golden Flashes hit four three-pointers.  They outscored the Bobcats 20-10 in the final quarter.  Lindsey Thall tied the game at 67 with 1:47 remaining in the game.

Thall led Kent State with 22 points and Megan Carter added 18 points.

Thanks to the Burke lay-up, the Bobcats survived.

With the win, Ohio is now 11-1 in road games this season and 5-1 in MAC road games.

The Bobcats have another big divisional matchup on Wednesday when they welcome the Buffalo Bulls to the Convocation Center.

“This is a just tough stretch,” Boldon said.  “We have to be better.  We’re good, but to win (the conference), we have to be better.”