Before Saturday’s game, freshman guard Katie Shumate’s season high in total points was 18. She surpassed that total at 3:44 in the third quarter setting her new career and season high with 20 points.
Shumate’s performance, also with eight rebounds, helped lead the Flashes to a 75-63 victory over Western Michigan, securing their first win in Mid American Conference play this season.
“I've been going through a little bit of like funk or whatever, but just playing with my teammates and playing off of them, with them to both our benefits. So I just think just staying out of our head and like if we make a mistake, you know, do the next right thing,” Shumate said.
The Flashes gained the lead for the first time with 5:02 left in the first quarter and didn’t look back. It was the first time since Dec. 19th, 2019 against Georgia Southern that the Flashes put up at least 19 points in the first quarter. Sophomore guard Asiah Dingle led the Flashes in the quarter with nine points and one assist.
“I was really pleased with the way the team responded and the fact that we started out with pace and tempo, even though we didn't make some shots early, we played through that,” coach Todd Starkey said. “The other day we let our misses affect our energy early on and today when we missed baskets, we still came down and did a really good job of defending.”
Kent State’s defense limited Western Michigan to just one player scoring double digits in the first half as only Breanna Mobley scored 10 points with seven rebounds. Mobley would finish the day with 16 points and 13 rebounds.
Three Broncos players had 11 points, guard Kamrin Reed, forward Leighah-Amori Wool and guard Jordan Walker. Reed had one assist, Wool had four assists and two rebounds and Walker had five rebounds.
“Today we were just wanting to do everything crisp, like urgent. Even if it wasn't correct, we were trying and we were trying to have energy. I think that everybody just used their voice today and it was just if everybody, if it was Katie's night, it was Katie's night, we were just playing together. It was fun tonight,” sophomore guard Mariah Modkins said.
The Flashes also improved on their foul game. During Kent State’s game against Eastern Michigan the team had a total of 25 fouls. The Flashes only had seven fouls in the first half and finished the game with 16.
Dingle had the second highest scoring of the day with 17 points, four assists and three rebounds. Freshman forward Nila Blackford had nine points with three rebounds and one assist. Freshman Clare Kelly and sophomore Lindsey Thall combined for 14 points.
Kent State’s bench provided support with Modkins scoring six points, with four assists and three rebounds. Sophomore Hannah Young had seven points with two rebounds and junior Monique Smith scored two with four rebounds.
“I thought Mariah did a great job of controlling tempo when we needed to, really distributing the ball, helping us execute and stay in our stuff and being a good communicator,” Starkey said.
Kent State will travel to Dekalb, Illinois for their next game against Northern Illinois on Wednesday Jan.15 at 7 p.m.
Contact Amanda Levine at email@example.com