Bulls Fall at Home to Ohio, 88-77
BUFFALO, NY – The University at Buffalo men's basketball team suffered its first home loss in Mid-American Conference play on Wednesday night, losing to Ohio, 88-77. It was the third straight loss for the Bulls who fell to 16-9 overall and 9-4 in conference play.
Buffalo played solid defense, holding Ohio to just 38.7 percent shooting from the field. However, Ohio grabbed 21 offensive rebounds and scored 24 second chance points. The Bobcats took 75 shots in the game, 20 more than the Bulls.
"Our energy level was just not what it needed to be," head coach Reggie Witherspoon said. "Ohio had a lot more energy than us and a lot more desire. When we get in a situation that we can't get a rebound, then we are in trouble. And tonight we were in trouble."
Ohio knocked down five of its 10 three-pointers in the first half to build a 37-32 lead at the break. The Bobcats extended their lead to seven early in the second half before Buffalo scored seven unanswered points to tie the game at 39. However, Ohio responded with a 10-0 scoring run to regain a 49-39 advantage.
Ohio built its lead to 15 with 10:53 remaining, before the Bulls made their charge. Over the next 3:27 UB outscored Ohio 12-2 and a Titus Robinson tip dunk cut the Ohio advantage to 62-57 with 7:26 left. However, the referees claimed Robinson slapped the backboard following his dunk and he was called for a technical foul. Nick Kellogg made both free throws for the Bobcats and Walter Offutt followed with a three-pointer to extend the Ohio lead to 10 and deflate the Bulls. The Ohio lead would remain in double-digits the rest of the way.
Mitchell Watt led the Bulls with 19 points and seven rebounds. Javon McCrea added 15 points and Titus Robinson tied a season high with 14 points. The trio of big men combined to shoot 16-of-19 from the field. Buffalo shot 47.3 percent from the field as a team.
The game came down to rebounding, an area the Bulls usually dominate. Ohio held a 42-34 in that category. The Bobcats were also nearly perfect at the free throw line, making 20 of 21 attempts.
Buffalo will remain at home and host Miami (OH) on Saturday afternoon at 3:00 pm.