1987 was the last time The University of Akron women’s basketball team returned home from Athens, Ohio with a win. Saturday afternoon at Ohio’s Convocation Center changed all of that, as the Zips scrambled for a 59-57 victory over Ohio.
“1987 was the last time The University of Akron women’s basketball team returned home from Athens, Ohio with a win. Saturday afternoon at Ohio’s Convocation Center changed all of that, as the Zips scrambled for a 59-57 victory over Ohio.
Winning on the road is very important in our league, said Head Coach Jodi Kest. The victory makes it four consecutive wins for the women, three of those coming on the road.
Akron (13-12, 6-7 MAC) overcame an eight-point deficit as the clock ticked under four minutes to play, completing the Zips’ season sweep of the Bobcats (7-19, 3-10 MAC).
The teams played even basketball for most of the first half, but a 12-0 run to end the half gave Akron a 31-19 advantage going into the locker room.
A 6-0 run for the Bobcats to start the second half trimmed the lead to only six. The game played close to even throughout the second half, until a flood of Ohio threes pushed their lead to seven.
They made three-pointers, you have to give them credit, said Kest, after seeing six second half three-pointers drained by the Bobcats.
The lead grew to 52-44 with under 3:30 to play, but buckets by Kara Murphy, Rachel Tecca and Carly Young made it a one-point deficit.
Akron turned Bobcat turnovers into points in the last two minutes, as the deficit quickly turned into a four-point lead for the Zips.
Clutch free throws down the stretch by freshman Kacie Cassell sealed the victory for the Zips. All seven of her points came from the charity stripe.
Tecca pulled down six boards while posting 11 points, and played a major role in the last-minute comeback.
Freshman Sina King was the only other Akron player to hit double figures, matching Tecca’s 11 points on 4-of-6 shooting.
Murphy hit four buckets for eight points, while Taylor Ruper was 2-of-4 from three-point range, posting a total of eight points.
Two games in a row we probably didn’t play our best, and we won both, so I’m happy, said Kest.
The Zips are now above the .500 mark for the first time since Jan. 15, but still face top-notch Mid-American Conference foes in Bowling Green and Kent State. Miami (OH) is the lone road game remaining on the schedule.
Tuesday night will bring the Falcons (22-4, 10-3 MAC) to James A. Rhodes Arena, as the Zips look for their fifth consecutive win.
The women’s longest winning streak of the season sits at four games (done twice), dating from Nov. 17 to Nov. 26, and the current win streak.