Zips Look Forward to Next Year


Daniel Utomi (in navy) searching for options against Eastern Michigan’s zone.

By Colin Brennan and Robert Barrett, Jr.

The Akron Zips Men’s Basketball team fell to the Eastern Michigan Eagles in the quarterfinal of the MAC Tournament, 67 – 58.

Akron dominated the first 31 minutes of the game, but could not secure the victory. The Zips jumped out to a 10-0 lead, surprising the third-seeded Eagles. The Zips continued to play well throughout the first half by shooting a better percentage from the field, out-rebounding Eastern Michigan and had more assists, as well as steals than the Eagles.

Akron’s Malcolm Duvivier led both teams in scoring in the first half with nine points. Eric Parrish led both teams in rebounds with six and Daniel Utomi lead both teams in assists with three.

Akron established their largest lead of the game, 19, in the middle of the second half, 47-28. The Zips continued to score from the three, shooting 9 of 22 from beyond the arc.

The Zips were unable to play well late in the game and Eastern Michigan went on a scoring run late in the second half, tying the game at 57. It was all Eagles after that, they outscored the Zips 45-27 in the final half.

After the game, Coach Groce spoke about the toughness his players showed. Akron started the game as well as they had all season, “I think this is maybe as good as we’ve played all year” Groce said, addressing the media.

Coach Groce also elaborated on the two games the team endured this week. He said, “Obviously two different games, one where we’re down by 23 and come back and win, and this one we’re up 19 and not quite able to finish them off”.

Akron finished the first season of the Coach Groce era with a record of 14-18 and 6-12 in conference play.