February 19, 2008

Flashes begin three-game road trip at Buffalo

Kent State puts its league-best 10-2 record on the line Tuesday when the Golden Flashes (21-5 overall) travel to Buffalo to face the Bulls (8-16, 2-10), who have lost 11 of their last 13 games. The Golden Flashes defeated the Bulls, 68-63, in January to open Mid-American Conference play.

The Series
Kent State owns a 20-3 lead in the all-time series and has won six straight. All three of Buffalo's wins in the series have come at home. KSU head coach Jim Christian is 10-2 against the Bulls.

About Kent State
Last week Kent State topped Central Michigan, 79-66, to win its 20th game of the season and add a tenth consecutive season with 20 wins or more. The Flashes then beat Ohio, 72-62, to maintain its two-game lead over Akron in the MAC East Division. Kent State became just third Division I program in the country (Kansas and Duke) to win 20 games in each of the past 10 seasons. Gonzaga joined the group on Saturday.

The Golden Flashes travel to Buffalo having won four straight and seven of their last eight games.

Junior guard Al Fisher was named MAC East Player of the Week for the third time this week after averaging 22.5 points, 6.5 rebounds and 4.5 assists during Kent State's wins over CMU and Ohio. He has led KSU in scoring over the last five games. On the season he has posted a team-high 13.7 points per game and leads the team with 113 assists. Fisher is the first player in school history to be named MAC East Player of the Week three times in the same season.

Senior Mike Scott, one of just two players to start each of KSU's 26 games, is second on the team in scoring with 13.0 points per game. His .869 (106-122) free throw percentage leads the team. Scott is second on the team with 17 blocked shots.

Sophomore guard Chris Singletary and senior forward Haminn Quaintance, the only other KSU player to start all 26 games, also average in double-figures. Singletary scores 10.2 points per game while Quaintance post 10.0 points per contest. Quaintance leads the team with 53 blocked shots.

About Buffalo
Losers of two straight, the Bulls are looking for their first win over a MAC East opponent this season. This game is the fourth of five straight home games for Buffalo.

After winning at Northern Illinois (89-81) and topping Eastern Michigan (68-64) at home, the Bulls lost to Ball State (76-67) and Miami (64-55).

Junior guard Andy Robinson leads the Bulls with 12.6 points per game. He's also tops in steals (43) and 3-point field goal percentage (.368; 43 of 117). He scored 25 points against Kent State in the Golden Flashes 68-63 win in Kent earlier this year.

Sophomore guard Calvin Betts averages 8.8 points and a team-high 6.8 rebounds per game. Sophomore forward Max Boudreau leads the Bulls with 16 blocked shots. Sophomore guard Sean Smiley has a team-high 44 3-pointers.

Kent State Notes:

  • A win Tuesday would be number 1,000 for the Kent State program
  • KSU has shot over 50.0 percent in three straight games connecting on 52.3 percent and averaging 77.7 points per game during the stretch
  • A win tonight would equal the second most under Jim Christian (22 in 2002-03 and 2003-04) and trail only the 25 in 2005-06
  • Of the current teams ranked in the Top 25 only No. 5 Kansas (19), No. 4 Duke (12), No. 7 Texas (9) and No. 1 Memphis (8) have 20-win season streaks as long as eight years going (including this year)
  • 19 of the teams currently ranked do not have streaks of longer than four consecutive years, including seven in the top 10. Of the 19, 13 teams have streaks of two years or less
  • Since the start of the 1998-99 season, Kent State has posted a 231-87 record and is 12th nationally over that span with a .727 winning percentage
  • Fisher has scored in double figures in 10 straight games, matching the longest streak by a KSU player since DeAndre Haynes had 10 straight in 2005-06. No one has had 11 straight since Antonio Gates and Eric Haut in 2003-03
Buffalo Notes:
  • Buffalo has dropped five straight to the Golden Flashes
  • Tuesday is the fourth of five straight home games for the Bulls
  • Andy Robinson is averaging 3.2 steals over the last six games
  • UB's opponents have shot over 50 percent in each of the last two games
  • Byron Mulkey has scored in double-figures in four of the last five games
  • Andy Robinson scored 25 points against Kent State back on Jan. 6.
Next up for Kent State
The Golden Flashes travel to San Francisco for a Bracket Busters match-up against No. 21 Saint Mary's.

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