Buffalo, N.Y. – After a late first half run gave No. 25-ranked Buffalo an eight point halftime lead, the Bulls exploded for 45 points in the second half to rout Kent State 80-57 in front of a capacity crowd of 6,688 loud fans. The win improves Buffalo to 24-3 (12-2 in the MAC). Kent State dropped to 19-8 (8-6 in the MAC).
Buffalo used defense to dominate in every category: points off turnovers (30-10), points in the paint (50-30), second chance points (18-10), fast break points (17-8) and bench points (33-15). Buffalo forced 24 turnovers and only turned it over 10 times themselves. Assists were also in Buffalo’s favor 19-8 and Buffalo had a slight advantage in offensive rebounds 16-15.
The Bulls were led by senior forward Nick Perkins who had a career high 27 points, along with six rebounds and three steals. He also drew eight fouls. A player who is equally effective inside and out, Perkins used his quick first step to get to the basket and hit two 3-pointers. He has legitimate NBA three point range. He works on the boards and is an active defender. He shows well defensively and makes himself available on offense. He sets solid picks and is always working.
Junior guard Antonio Williams led Kent State with 17 points before fouling out. He was one of the few Golden Flashes who shot the ball well and was competitive on defense. The MAC leading scorer Jaylin Walker (averaging 21.3 ppg) was held to 12 points (second lowest output of the year) and only two in the second half when being guarded by C.J. Massinburg. He did not make a 3-pointer (0-of-4), did not have an assist and turned the ball over five times. He also had a +/- of -26 for the night which was worst in the game. He has range on his shot but didn’t connect consistently shooting 4-of-11 overall.