Justin Turner made timely plays down the stretch of a rivalry game for the second time in as many games
Turner was fouled with 1.2 seconds left and the score tied before knocking both free throws and lifting
Bowling Green to an 85-83 Mid-American Conference win over the Rockets on Saturday at the Stroh Center.
“Give Turner credit, he’s a heck of a player and he made some big plays when it mattered,” Toledo head
coach Tod Kowalczyk said.
Bowling Green, still with the best record in the conference, improved to 18-6 overall and 9-2 in the MAC.
Toledo, which has lost five in a row starting with the first loss to BG in late January, fell to 11-13,
Marreon Jackson, Toledo’s leading scorer was twice called for flopping when he fell down after a 3-point
attempt on Saturday. Turner, whose final shot was a long stepback, fell down before the official blew
the whistle. Kowalczyk felt their should not have been a foul called on either team on the play.
Huger, who was just a few feet from the play along the BG bench, disagreed.
“I thought it was the right call. You have to give him room to land and I thought he ran through him,”
Huger said. “When you run through a guy, they’ll call that every time.”
Toledo had cut BG’s lead to one point when Marreon Jackson, who scored a game-high 31, made a floater
with less than seven minutes to play.
Turner responded with a steal before sending an outlet pass ahead to freshman Davin Zeigler, who made his
first collegiate start, for a double-clutch layup. A jam-packed Stroh Center erupted with a deafening
The arena got even louder when Turner capped a short 6-0 run and forced a Rockets timeout with a
transition layup of his own for a 73-66 lead. He added an acrobatic layup through contact for a
five-point lead with 2:32 to play, fired a pass to back-cutting Caleb Fields for a reverse layup and a
three-point lead and knocked down the go-ahead free throws in the final second.
Turner finished with a team-high 21 points and five assists for BG.
Toledo’s big three of M. Jackson, Luke Knapke and Willie Jackson combined for 73 of its 83 points and
fellow starter Spencer Littleson — who was called for the foul on Turner in the final second — scored
The Falcons’ answer was the bench.
BG had a 31-6 advantage in bench points, which more than doubled its 15 bench points it scored at Toledo
on Jan. 25.
All nine players to play for Bowling Green on Saturday scored at least five points, including each of the
Matiss Kulackovskis paced the reserve unit with 12 points, hitting his first two 3-point attempts — both
at least a couple steps behind the top of the 3-point arc — in the first half. He also added a tip-in
with 25.6 seconds to play which broke a tie and pushed BG ahead 83-81.
Kulackovskis’ putback on a missed Turner layup was originally waved off on the floor for offensive
interference, but after review, was deemed a good basket.
“When you can get that production and it’s now everything on Justin Turner or Daeqwon Plowden. When we
can get other guys chipping in, then they can kind of pick and choose their points and where they’re
trying to go,” Huger said.
“When they’re coming off the bench and playing like that, providing a real spark, it takes a lot of load
off the starters,” Turner said.
Michael Laster scored seven with three assists and no turnovers, while Marlon Sierra and Trey Diggs each
scored six off the bench.
Plowden, who played less than seven minutes in the first half due to a pair of early fouls, was second
with 13 points and led with eight rebounds.
BG starts a two-game road trip at 7 p.m. on Tuesday at Akron.