BUFFALO, NY – Behind a strong team defensive effort on Wednesday night inside Alumni Arena, the University at Buffalo women's basketball team (18-4, 9-2 MAC) earned a commanding 80-42 victory over the Kent State Golden Flashes. With the win, Buffalo improves to 8-0 at home this season, marking the second best start on their home court in program history.
The stingy Buffalo defense was able to hold Kent State to just 21% shooting from the floor in the game, the lowest field goal percentage against UB this season. The Bulls also held the visitors to just 42 points, marking the fifth time this season UB has held an opponent under 50 points. The Bulls are now 24-0 over the past two seasons when holding their opponents to under 60 points scored.
Buffalo was able to get out to a quick start on Wednesday as they gained the 11-4 advantage after a triple and a layup from Cierra Dillard just over three minutes into action. After the Golden Flashes cut the UB lead to two, 11-9, on a McKenna Stephens three pointer, Buffalo was able to close out the first quarter on a 14-0 run as Cassie Oursler and Stephanie Reid each netted five points in the run to give the Bulls the 25-9 lead through 10 minutes.
Jordan Korinek opened the second quarter with back-to-back buckets for Kent State before Autumn Jones and Dillard connected on three pointers to give UB their biggest lead of the half, 36-15. The Bulls finished off the first half with back-to-back buckets from Summer Hemphill after great feeds by Reid and Dillard to take the commanding 41-23 edge to the locker room.
The third quarter was dominated by defense as the Bulls were able to hold the slim 15-9 edge in scoring through 10 minutes. The Buffalo defense held the Flashes to just 1-for-17 shooting in the quarter while UB went 6-for-12. Oursler led the way in the quarter as she scored four points and three rebounds while Jones contributed with a layup and free throw to send UB to the final quarter with the 56-32 lead.
Buffalo opened the final quarter strong as Oursler finished off two more layups to give her a team-high 19 points as the Bulls took the 60-34 lead with just over eight minutes to play in the game. The UB bench then was able to get some quality minutes and they made the most of their opportunity, especially Hanna Hall and Brittany Morrison. Hall was able to knock down all four of her shot attempts, including two from behind the arc, while Morrison netted five points and three rebounds over the final seven minutes of the game to lift UB to the 80-42 victory.
Oursler was a beast for the Bulls down low on Wednesday night as she was able to post her fifth double-double of the season with 19 points, a career-high 14 rebounds and a block across just 18 minutes of work. Oursler was super-efficient as she went 8-for-12 from the floor and 3-for-3 from the charity stripe while snagging six offensive rebounds.
Freshman Hanna Hall had the best game of her young career off the bench on Wednesday as she was able to net a career-best 12 points, three assists and a steal in just 10 minutes of action while going 4-for-4 from the floor and 2-for-2 from behind the arc in the win. Hemphill continued her strong play for the Bulls as she finished with 12 points, six rebounds and two blocks while Dillard went for 10 points, six assists and two rebounds across just 22 minutes of action.
Reid had another efficient night for the Bulls as she finished the game with nine points, eight assists, four rebounds and two steals in just 25 minutes. With her eighth assist of the night, Reid became just the 13th player in MAC history to record 600 career helpers.
As a team, the Bulls were able to win the battle on the boards as they outrebounded Kent State 51-39 while the Golden Flashes held the 17-14 edge in offensive rebounds. Buffalo continued their domination inside the paint as they outscored Kent State 40-20 for the game while also earning the 12-0 edge in fast break scoring as on the season they now own the 261-84 advantage while holding six opponents without a transition bucket.
The UB bench was able to out produce the Golden Flashes 28-10 for the game while Buffalo finished with 13 points off of 14 Kent State turnovers.
Buffalo will return to the hardwood on Saturday afternoon at 1:00 pm as they travel to Oxford, OH to take on the Miami (OH) RedHawks for the second time this season. UB handed the RedHawks a 72-67 loss inside Alumni Arena earlier this season.