A strong defensive effort was the difference as the Akron Zips won its 12th-straight game thanks to a 68-55 victory over Bowling Green on Wednesday in a Mid-American Conference matchup at the Stroh Center.
Akron's 12-game winning streak is the second-longest active streak in the nation behind Kansas' 18-game streak. The win also gave Akron head coach Keith Dambrot his 200th win at Akron (200-91). The victory is also the 17th for the Zips in the last 18 meeting with the Falcons.
Akron (16-4, 7-0 MAC) improved to 7-0 in league play for the first time since joining the MAC in 1992-93.
For the game, the Zips shot 48.3 percent from the floor (28-of-58) and 35.0 percent from long range (7-of-20). The Falcons finished the contest shooting 33.3 percent (17-of-51).
Zeke Marshall led the Zips with 15 points while Nick Harney and Demetrius "Tree" Treadwell finished with 10 points each. Treadwell recorded his fourth double-double of the season (11 rebounds), including his third in four games. Alex Abreu finished with nine points, six assists.
Chauncey Orr led Bowling Green (7-13, 2-5) with 16 points.
Bowling Green opened the half trying to chip away at the Akron lead, closing the gap to 35-28 by the 15:38 mark. From there, the Akron lead would see-saw between seven and ten points for the next four minutes.
BGSU made just three buckets over an 11-minute stretch as Akron pushed its lead to 20 (64-44) before the final media timeout. The Falcons would not come closer than ## points as Akron would win its 12th-straight game.
Akron fell behind 4-0 early, but scored nine of the next 11 points to take a 9-6 advantage into the under-16 media timeout. The short 9-2 run was capped off by a dunk by Marshall courtesy of a nice Gilliam pass in the lane.
The run grew to 17-5 as the Zips opened up a 17-9 lead with 11:08 left in the opening half. Akron kept the defensive pressure on Bowling Green, holding the Falcons to just three field goals.
Bowling Green ended its 8:11 field goal drought with A'uston Calhoun's dunk at the 5:36, however UA maintained a 21-14 lead. It was just the fourth basket for BGSU. The defensive pressure would continue as the Zips would take a 28-17 lead into the locker room.
The Zips held the Falcons to just 18.5 percent shooting in the opening 20 minutes (5-of-27) while shooting 40.0 percent (12-of-30). UA was 4-of-10 from behind the arc (40.0 percent) while BGSU connected on just 1-of-10 (10.0 percent).
Marshall led all players in the half with eight points and two boards. Abreu finished with six points, three rebounds and three assists, while Treadwell had six points, five boards and two dimes.
The Zips return home to play host to the Ohio Bobcats on Saturday, Feb. 2, on ESPNU. The game, which will serve as Social Media Night, is set to tip off at 5 p.m. ET.
Zips Notebook: Head coach Keith Dambrot is just the second coach to win 200 games at Akron (Russell Beichly, 286) ... Akron's previous best start to league play was 6-0 during the 2005-06 and 1999-2000 seasons ... the Zips finished January a perfect 7-0 and are now 57-20 in the month under Dambrot.