Three short days and what a difference.Last Saturday, Akron handed the Kent State women a 67-62 loss with the Flashes only scoring 23 points in the first half.On Tuesday, Kent came out smoking against Ball State, hitting its first 11 shots and establishing a 26-6 lead with 12:50 left. The rest of the period was all Kent, taking a 52-24 lead into halftime.By game's end, Kent had an 82-44 victory to raise its record to 5-2 in the Mid-American Conference and 11-6 overall. The Flashes remain in first place, holding a two-game lead (in the win column) over Akron and Buffalo in the East Division."One of the things I wanted to do was improve our halfcourt defense," said Kent coach Bob Lindsay. "I thought we defended well through the whole game."On offense, I thought we were able to go inside and we were able to convert."One of the big differences from the Akron game was the production off the bench. Against Akron, the bench produced only seven points. Tuesday, it scored 30 points with Jenny Kempf and Emily Fakes leading the way with eight each. Also, starter Kristen Buelow scored eight points after being shut out at Akron."We had good contribution from our bench," said Lindsay, who received a two-minute standing ovation from the 1,273 fans when he received a plaque from athletic director Laing Kennedy for becoming the winningest coach in MAC history with his 173rd victory."One of the things you have to guard against with a big halftime lead is to assume you are going to win. We did stand around a little in the second half but all-in-all, we did a lot of good things."Ball State came into Tuesday's contest with a 3-3 MAC record and a 6-10 overall mark. But what was interesting, was the fact that the Cardinals won all three MAC contests on the road.It wasn't going to happen again.Kent was definitely smarting from the loss to Akron. It was a pity that Ball State happened to be next on the schedule."We have a Jekyll and Hyde team," said Ball State coach Robyn Markey. "Sometimes we show up and sometimes we don't. Against a team like Kent, you had better show up. I'm very disappointed with the players."The only person who showed up was (Markita) Griffin (Akron Ellet graduate). She is averaging 20 points a game and has been a mainstay for us."Kent was hot in the first half, hitting 73 percent from the field, outrebounding the Cardinals 16-7, and gathering in 20 turnovers with eight steals. One of the steals came right before the first-half buzzer as Dawn Zerman stepped in front of Griffin and hit a six-foot jumper for the 52-24 lead.In the second half, Kent's shooting dropped off to 39 percent but the defense turned up a notch, holding the Cardinals to 35 percent from the floor."We knew what we had to do after losing to Akron," said Flashes' guard Jamie Rubis. "We were focused on playing a full 40 minutes."Coach (Lindsay) told us at halftime to get some pride in our defense. We wanted to hold Ball State under 50 points."Rubis led Kent with 14 points and seven rebounds. Julie Studer had 12 and Zerman 10. The Flashes shot 58.5 percent for the game.Interesting, the Flashes made 17-of-17 foul shots, the second best effort since the 18-of-18 against Bowling Green in 1989. Carrie Nance had a career-high eight assists."The 21 assists we had was a reflection of good ball movement," said Lindsay. "I was also pleased with the plus 10 rebounding edge (30-20).Griffin led the Cardinals with 18 points. She was the only Ball Sate player in double figures.Ball State's Amy Kieckbusch, who leads the nation in field-goal percentage with 68 percent and averages 21.4 points a game, was held to five points on a 2-of-6 effort. Her six shots was her lowest output of the season.Kent plays at Ohio University (3-13, 1-5) on Saturday. _____Kent State 82, Ball State 44(At Kent State)BALL STATENAMEMINFG3-PTFTRBPFATPPilkington152-50-00-01304Crook280-30-11-34021Kieckbusch242-60-01-12315Holbrook211-41-30-00113Griffin295-92-46-813118Burnham40-00-00-00000Copeland182-41-20-01225Cooper192-41-20-00215Shaughnessy141-40-00-03102Hilger20-00-00-01000Talbott30-00-00-00100Tucker230-00-01-22101______________________________________________Totals20015-395-129-142017844KENT STATENAMEMINFG3-PTFTRBPFATPBuelow172-30-14-43118Rubis295-70-04-471114Zolik182-30-11-10235Studer185-70-02-244012Nance234-40-00-03288Zerman345-90-20-032410Kempf183-60-02-22008Beggs151-30-12-22304Fakes143-62-50-01018Drews121-41-42-21125Stumpf20-10-00-00010______________________________________________Totals20031-533-1417-1730162182Ball State2420_44Kent State5230_82Blocked shots _ Ball State (none). Kent State (none). Turnovers _ Ball state 34-22. Technical fouls _ None. Attendance _ 1,276.