Saturday, January 10, 2009


Well, so much for prognostication.

A game that looked 100% like it was going to be a defensive struggle turned into a shoot the Falcons won 86-82 on a snowy day in Bowling Green, OH.

In many ways, it was typical of a number of games the Falcons have played this year. They had a big lead--21 points with about 13:00 left--and then watched it melt away. This time the Falcons ended up winning, but I have a feeling if this had been a road game, we would not have been so fortunate.

We played about as good a first half as we can play, I think, shooting 65.5%, holding Buffalo to 31%, making only 4 tos and drawing even in the rebounding battle.

The second half was not so good. The Bulls shot 60% this time while BG shot 41%, the Bulls had a +7 rebounding margin, especially pronounced on the offensive boards.

Here's an idea how the game flow went:

From 12-9 minutes in the second half, Buffalo seemed to turn up the defensive intensity and used a 9-0 run to move the lead from 19 to 10. Coming out of the 7:15 media timeout, BG battled back, getting a stop and then scoring the next 17 points.

In retrospect, this probably won the game. At the time, it wasn't so clear. Buffalo kept fighting, and had the lead at 6 with 1:22 left, and then eventually got it to 3 inside of :15, but Clements hit a free throw and the game was finally won. Buffalo never had the ball with a chance to tie.

The story of the game stats is pretty well told here. Buffalo badly dominated us on the boards, but BG shot free throws really well and Buffalo was under 60% (+4 net gain for Falcons in free throws). Both teams took care of the ball really well, and the Falcons had enough shooting muscle to win the game.

Individually, Chris Knight had a nice night again. He scored 22 points with 5 boards, 4 assists and 9-14 from the field. He played a huge role in the Falcons jacking up the lead in the first place, and that's ultimately when the stage was set to win the game. Brian Moten had 20 points, 3 treys and five boards. Joe Jakubowski had 14 points and five assists against one turnover.

Time will tell how this win shakes out, but I will say this. Buffalo was playing well, as well as anyone in the conference, and this is a quality win for us. Some Falcon fans will be concerned because it had its flaws, but we did win the game, and played a great first half getting there. For today, that's something we will take. We defended our home floor.

It gets even tougher on Wednesday, as the Falcons travel to Kent to take on the Flashes. More on that game in the coming days.

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