Here's what Kent State men's basketball coach Rob Senderoff noticed after watching the tape of Wednesday's 72-55 victory at Cleveland State, the Golden Flashes' fourth straight victory to close the non-conference portion of the season:
WHAT STOOD OUT: "We had a lot of guys making winning plays. Basically anybody that stepped on the floor did something to help us win. (Senior guard Randall Holt) hit some big shots, (sophomore point guard) Kris Brewer probably played his best defensive game of the year. He did a great job on ball screen defense, and was a presence inside. (Senior guard) Chris Evans made some great plays, rebounds, switching on ball screens. We competed and defended at a high level."
WHAT NEEDS IMPROVEMENT: "We've gotta continue to work on us. We need to continue to work on our half-court defense, on covering up for each other, on playing unselfishly."
ON FINISHING 9-5 IN THE NON-CONFERENCE SEASON, THE SECOND-BEST MARK IN THE MAC: "I'm happy with where we are. There's obviously a couple games you would like to play again, but there's probably some teams that say the same thing who lost to us. Most people wouldn't have expected us to be 9-5 right now, I'd say probably (no one) outside of the people in our locker room. I've heard more people during the year tell me it's gonna be a tough season, I know I was initially asked if I thought we'd win seven games this year. We had only 30 percent of our offense and no all-league players returning. Then one of our starters breaks his foot six games in who had been playing very well, freshman Chris Ortiz. Our guys have continued to fight, battle, and continue to get better. I still think there's a lot of room for improvement with our group. I hope that we continue to play hungry, continue to play with a chip on our shoulder, and don't take anything for granted because the one thing that's clear to me is that our margin for error this year is very, very small. There are other teams in our conference that either talent-wise or experience-wise have a much greater margin for error than we do. We have to play at a high level collectively to have a chance to be successful."
NEXT GAME: The Flashes (9-5) will open MAC play next Wednesday by hosting Toledo (5-7).
-- ALLEN MOFF/R-C