Akron (12-4) at Kent State (11-6)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, January 19, 3 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Memorial Athletic and Convocation Center (6,327) -- Kent, Ohio. Television: ESPNU. Home Record: Akron 9-0, Kent State 6-4. Away Record: Akron 1-3, Kent State 5-2. Neutral Record: Akron 2-1, Kent State 0-0. Conference Record: Akron 3-0, Kent State 1-1. Series Record: Kent State leads, 69-66.
GAME NOTES: The Akron Zips shoot for a ninth straight win on Saturday when they make a short trip to play Kent State in a Mid-American Conference bout at the Memorial Athletic and Convocation Center.
Akron continued to roll on Wednesday, as Nick Harney scored a team-high 15 points to help the Zips get past the Ball State Cardinals, 71-64 at Rhodes Arena.
Harney also recorded four rebounds and two steals in the win, while Zeke Marshall scored 13 points and had six rebounds. Alex Abreu also scored 11 points and handed out seven assists as the Zips won for the 11th time in their last 13 games.
Kent State, meanwhile, won its second straight game on Wednesday, as Randal Holt scored a team-high 27 points to pace the Golden Flashes past the Buffalo Bulls, 80-68, at Alumni Arena. Holt was a perfect 5-of-5 from beyond the arc in the Golden Flashes' sixth win in seven tries.
Chris Evans recorded a double-double scoring 25 points to go with 14 rebounds. Devareaux Manley tacked on 10 points off the bench.
The Zips, who have won four in a row over Kent State, are tied for first in wins in the MAC with their 12-4 overall record. Coach Keith Dambrot's team has easily been the most impressive in the league thus far, as it leads the MAC in scoring offense (76.1) and is the runner-up in the scoring defense column with 62.8 points allowed per outing.
Senior center Zeke Marshall, who nets a team-best 12.3 ppg, tallied 13 points and a team-high six rebounds to go with three blocked shots in the win over Ball State. He also became the second player in MAC history to reach 300 career blocks (300). Harney (10.8) and Treadwell (10.1) are both chiming in with just over 10 points per outing while Abreu is guiding the ship with 9.1 points and 5.7 assists per appearance.
The Golden Flashes could provide a challenge for the red-hot Zips as they are third in the league in scoring with 70.5 ppg. Evans is leading the squad in both scoring (17.1) and rebounding (7.7) while Holt is tallying 14.2 points per contest.
Akron was bullied by most of its conference foes during football season, now it is returning the favor on the hardwood. The Zips are a very physical and aggressive unit on both ends of the floor. Marshall's size makes him a valuable asset in a mid-major conference and his teammates are thriving with him in the middle.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Akron 73, Kent State 65
01/19 10:42:01 ET