Men's Basketball Preview: Central Michigan at Kent State

Published:

Records: Central Michigan (8-15, 1-10 MAC), Kent State (13-11, 4-7 MAC).

When/Where: Tonight, 6 p.m./M.A.C. Center.

Radio/TV: WHLO 640 AM/TWC.

Head Coaches: Keno Davis, Central Michigan (19-35, 2nd year at CMU; 93-91 overall); Rob Senderoff, Kent State (55-37, 3rd season).

2012-13 Records: Central Michigan 11-20, 4-12 MAC; Kent State 21-14, 9-7 MAC.

Series: Kent State leads 43-30. Central Michigan defeated KSU 78-73 in overtime just 10 days ago to snap 12-game losing streaks in the series both overall and in Mount Pleasant.

Scouting Central Michigan

The Chippewas earned their one and only MAC win over the Flashes, but since then lost 79-70 at home to Buffalo and were drubbed 88-63 at Northern Illinois. ... Central Michigan is led by 6-foot-1 sophomore guard Chris Fowler, who ranks third in the MAC in scoring at 17.9 points per game and third in assists (5 apg). He's shooting 55 percent from the field, and averages a MAC-best 19.5 points per game in conference play. Other top performers include 6-8 sophomore forward John Simons (10.9 points, 5.9 rebounds), who is shooting 39.3 percent from 3-point range, and 6-7 sophomore forward Blake Hibbits (9.4 points, 3.7 rebounds). Simons shot up the Flashes in their first meeting this year, draining 6-of-11 3-pointers on the way to a game-high 22 points. ... The Chippewas, who have only one senior on their roster, rank second in the MAC in scoring (73.7 ppg) and first in 3-pointers made per game (7.8). But they rank 11th in defense (73.1 points allowed per game), as foes are shooting 48.7 percent from the field against them.

Flash Facts

Kent State is fresh off its second consecutive last-second victory at home. Junior guard Devareaux Manley buried a 3-pointer from the corner with less than a second left to give KSU a 62-61 victory over Bowling Green on Wednesday. ... The Flashes are a respectable 10-5 at home this year, but have struggled to score at the M.A.C. Center in conference play. In their past four games, Kent State is averaging just 57.5 points per outing. For the year, the Flashes average 70 points per contest. ... Junior guard Derek Jackson took over the team scoring lead (11.3 ppg) after piling up a career-high 25 points off the bench against the Falcons. He's two points ahead of junior point guard Kris Brewer (11.3 ppg), who is mired in a nasty shooting slump. Brewer is 11-of-50 from the field and 1-of-19 from 3-point range in his past five games. He is shooting 37 percent from the field and 25 percent on 3-pointers for the year, but just 32 percent from the floor and 19 percent from long range in MAC games. Last year Brewer shot 46 percent from the field and 42.4 percent on 3-pointers. ... Senior forward Darren Goodson also averages double figures for the Flashes (10.2 ppg), along with 4.2 rebounds and 2.6 assists, while senior forward Mark Henniger leads the team in rebounding (5.2 rpg).

Senderoff on Central Michigan

"The things we're gonna need to do better than we did in the first game are first, take better care of the basketball. They killed us in points off turnovers (22 points off 18 KSU turnovers). When it's all said and done that was the difference in the game. We have to limit penetration, which will force their 3-pointers to be contested. And we have to do a great job on the defensive glass. They had too many offensive rebounds (15) against us in the first game, which led to more second-chance points (13). That shouldn't happen against them."

Email: amoff@recordpub.com

Phone: 330-541-9445

Twitter: @AllenMoff_RC

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