(updated 10:35 p.m.) BG women roll past Akron, 81-65

In an early-season statement game, Bowling Green women’s basketball team showed its mettle Sunday
Facing the preseason favorite to win the Mid-American East, the Falcons rolled past Akron, 81-65, at the
Stroh Center.
‘‘The bull’s-eye is actually on their (Akron’s) back for once,’’ said BG senior Jillian Halfhill. ‘‘We
took it that we were just going to go and play our heart’s out, and show everyone what we’ve got.’’
‘‘We had a lot to prove,’’ BG head coach Jennifer Roos said. ‘‘We really emphasized protecting home
court, and our kids really stepped up to the plate.’’
Offensively, the Falcons had five players score in double figures, led by Halfhill’s 18 points, which
included a 4-of-6 effort on threes.
‘‘When I had a look, I took it,’’ Halfhill said about the 3-pointers. ‘‘When I made my first one, I was
feeling it. So I just kept shooting them for the rest of the game.’’
The Falcons were 10-of-18 from beyond the arc.
‘‘We are a difficult team to guard, in the sense that we have four different kids on the floor that can
shoot the three,’’ Roos said.
Defensively, Bowling Green played well against the Zips, who came into the game averaging 83.5 points per
game. Akron never led in the game.
‘‘We always focus on defense,’’ Halfhill said.
Akron’s Rachel Tecca scored a game-high 22 points. Tecca and Hanna Luburgh came into the game averaging
47.9 points per game, but were held to 36 points.
‘‘Our game plan was to high-hedge Luburgh and just stay in front of Tecca, and that was the biggest key
to the game,’’ Halfhill said. ‘‘(We were) kind of trying to sag off other people to dig in against
Luburgh and Tecca. We were able to do that a lot.
‘‘Our game play was to get a defensive stop, and then execute on offense,’’ she added.
The Akron duo combined to go 15-of-30 from the field with only three turnovers.
‘‘We wanted to make shots difficult for them. We wanted them to take contested jumpers. We wanted them to
have to take shots late in the shot clock … and disrupt their tempo,’’ Roos said.
BG’s three seniors — Halfhill, Jill Stein, and Alexis Rogers — were catalysts at both ends of the floor.

‘‘MAC play is huge for everyone, especially the seniors,’’ Halfhill said. ‘‘We want to win the MAC, and
go to the NCAA tournament; that’s our goal. We’re going to give everything we have during MAC play.’’

Halfhill (four assists), Stein (10 points, two blocks), and Rogers (14 points, eight rebounds) combined
to go 14-of-30 from the field, and 11-of-13 from the free-throw line while scoring 44 points.
Erica Donovan finished with a double-double of 12 points and 10 rebounds, and Jasmine Matthews
contributed 12 points for the Falcons.
Bowling Green got a quick start, building a 20-10 lead, 7:49 into the game.
Akron did come back to within 34-29 with 2:22 left in the first half, but Matthews made two free throws
and Halfhill hit a 3-pointer to give the Falcons a 39-29 edge at the half.
Roos was pleased with the play from the bench, which played a total of 29 minutes in the first half while
scoring nine points.
‘‘Their effort in the first half was the biggest turning point for me,’’ Roos said about the bench. ‘‘You
can either move forward, go backward, or stay the same, and I think this team took a big step forward
today in that first half.’’
In the second half, Akron was within eight points twice, but could get no closer.
The Falcons were 20-of-22 from the free-throw line in the second half, with Rogers going 6-of-6 and
Halfhill making 4-of-4. Rogers had 10 points and six rebounds in the second half before fouling out with
4:18 left in the game.
NOTES: The Falcons are now 13-2 overall and 3-0 in the MAC … Akron is 7-7, 1-2 … There were four ties
in the game … The Falcons went 1-of-3 on free throws to start and end the game, but made 21 straight
in between, finishing 23-of-27 (85.2 percent) from the line … BG scored 17 points off UA’s 14
turnovers … Bowling Green plays at Ball State Wednesday.