BiG TWITTER POST: Falcons use strong 2nd-half effort, holding Dayton scoreless for nearly 7 minutes, to spring 65-40 upset on No. 15 Flyers at Stroh Sunday
BiG GAME STORY: Both teams struggled with their shooting in the first half and neither team had a lead bigger than four points in a half that included seven ties. A wacky sequence in the first moments of the first half – Alexis Rogers just beat the shot clock with an off-balance jumper that Miriam Justinger rebounded and passed to Danielle Havel for a layup just before the horn sounded – gave the Falcons a 28-25 lead at the break. BG lead 31-30 at the 16:39 mark of the second half when Chrissy Steffen hit a 3-pointer, then a layup to give the Falcons a six-point lead. Dayton made a 3-pointer at the 14:40 mark, but Bowling Green scored the 12 points of the game as the Flyers went nearly seven minutes without scoring. The Falcons outscored Dayton 29-7 in the final 13 minutes of the contest to cruise to the win.
BiG OVERVIEW: The Falcons had three players finish in double figures, led by junior Alexis Rogers with 20 points and 10 rebounds. Senior Chrissy Steffen posted 16 points and seven rebounds, while junior Jillian Halfhill finished with 15 points, nine rebounds and three assists.
BiG PLAY: The Falcons’ victory ended up being a 25-point rout, but that final score was misleading as the game was tight until the final 10 minutes. BG led just 31-30 before Chrissy Steffen took a pass at the top of the key and, open because of a double screen in front of her, sank a 3-pointer. On the Falcons’ next possession Steffen drove to the basket for a layup that increased the lead to six points. Those two baskets seemed to spark the Falcons, who clamped down on Dayton defensively while shooting very well offensively in the game’s final 14 minutes. The result was the ability to turn a one-point lead into a 25-point romp.
BiG PLAYER OF THE GAME: Junior Alexis Rogers finished with 20 points and 10 rebounds to lead all players in both categories, posting her second double-double this season and 11th of her career. Rogers kept the Falcons alive in the first half, scoring 16 of BG’s 28 points in that period while adding five rebounds. In the game she was just 4-of-15 field from the field, making 1-of-2 3-pointers, but sinking 11-of-13 free throws (she made 7-of-8 in the first half). Rogers also had one assist and posted a game-high six steals.
BiG NUMBERS: Dayton entered the BG game averaging 82.6 points per game … and didn’t even score half that total. The Flyers came into contest shooting 45.6 percent from the field, including 36.0 percent on 3-pointers; in the contest they made just 25.5 percent of their shots, including just 12.5 percent of their 3’s. Dayton especially struggled with its shooting in the second half, making just 4-of-25 (16 percent) of its field goals and just 1-of-15 (6.7 percent) of its 3-pointers. And the Flyers turned the ball over 21 times, which is a little high, but forced just 13 Falcon turnovers, which is five below their season average. That all adds up to a recipe for defeat, and those are some major reasons why Bowling Green was able to beat a 12-0 Dayton squad Sunday.
BiG NOTE: Dayton’s starting lineup includes a 6-3 and a 6-4 player, and a 6-5 player comes off the bench. That is part of the reason the Flyers came into the game outrebounding opponents by 11.6 boards per game while averaging 15.25 offensive rebounds per contest. But the Falcons put together an impressive performance on the boards, outrebounding the taller Flyers 43-39 while limiting UD to 12 offensive boards (and just seven second-chance points). Bonus points for BG for grabbing 13 offensive rebounds and turning them into 15 second-chance points.
BiG THOUGHT: There’s little doubt senior Chrissy Steffen will remember the game in which she scored the 1,000th point of her BGSU career, since it came in a victory against a ranked opponent. But there’s also little doubt that Falcon fans will forget Steffen, an All-Mid-American Conference second team choice last season who now ranks 24th on BG’s all-time scoring list with 1,007 career points. She has made 148 3’s in her career to move into eighth place on the Falcons’ all-time list in that category as well.
BiG QUESTION: Can the Falcons be more consistent? On Dec. 16 BG posted a strong home victory over a very good Wyoming team, but the Falcons followed that up with a narrow victory against Massachusetts, one of the weaker teams in the Atlantic 10. Now Bowling Green has posted a win over a nationally ranked Dayton team, and the Falcons will need to show they can put together back-to-back solid efforts when they host UCF (formerly known as Central Florida) at the Stroh Center Friday night.MORE INFO: Click here to read the game story from the contest.