CLEVELAND– The MAC’s men’s championship pitted rivalries Kent State and Akron. Akron (23-12) came from behind and won in overtime. With 12.8 seconds left, senior Brett McKnight stepped up and hit two free throws to give the Zips’ a thrilling 66-65 victory. Akron’s Zeke Marshall broke his own school record with nine blocked shots. He was also the Tournament MVP.
All four of the men’s semi-final Mid-American Conference games were televised. Once again, veteran basketball broadcaster and Detroit native, Michael Reghi called the action. From courtside he said, “I usually lose my voice and it is a very long day but these teams are competitive. One of the teams always gets hot and that makes it exciting. It was wide open this year and what a fantastic finish,” he added. Reghi was joined by MAC Hall of Famer and former University of Toledo and Philadelphia 76ers standout Steve Mix for the men’s games. The women’s television package had Mike Cairns providing the play-by-play, while Jackie Windon did the color presentation.
The MAC games were on an assortment of networks simultaneously. These included SportsTime Ohio, Comcast Michigan, ESPN Full Court and ESPN3.com. Western Michigan, Kent State and Ball State all have a spirited chance for NIT post season play. The MAC Tournament winners at Quicken Loans Arena gets an automatic berth in the both the men’s and women’s NCAA Tournament.
In the women’s Championship, senior Lauren Prochaska had 20 points to lead the Bowling Green State University team to a 51-46 win over Eastern Michigan University and a second consecutive Mid-American Conference Tournament title. Tracy Pontius added 13 for the winners.
BGSU (28-4) had only 10 turnovers, in the defensive battle. It was the second straight year Prochaska was named MVP of the Tournament.
In the semi-final, the EMU Ladies used a full-court press to force Toledo into 22 turnovers and pull off the upset, 61-55.
The Lady Eagles improve to 22-11 after taking down the MAC regular season champion and top seeded Rockets. Toledo may still get an NCAA or NIT bid at 23-8.
Cassie Schrock netted a team-high 20 points for the Eagles, and made eight free throws. Paige Redditt notched her fourth double-double of the season, scoring 18, while snagging 11 rebounds for EMU. Schrock has now played in a record 122 games in her EMU career.
Bowling Green got to the MAC women’s championship after getting by Central Michigan, 80-72. The senior duo of Pontius and Prochaska had 18 and 16 respectively, with Prochaska hitting 11 of 12 free throws.
Prochaska drew the defensive assignment on Shonda Long, and held the CMU shooter to just six points. Long had scored a school-record 40 points in the Chippewas’ win over Buffalo in the quarterfinal round.