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Ohio Men’s Basketball Hosts Akron for #Convo50 Celebration 

Ohio Men’s Basketball Hosts Akron for #Convo50 Celebration 

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OHIO MEN'S BASKETBALL 2018-19 • GAME 21
Saturday, Feb. 2, 2019
3:30 p.m. ET | Ohio (11-9, 3-5 MAC) vs. Akron (12-8, 4-3 MAC) |Convocation Center | Athens, Ohio | Live Stats | ESPN+ | Listen | Ohio Notes | Akron Notes

ATHENS, Ohio --The Ohio men's basketball team (11-9, 3-5 MAC) returns to Athens on Saturday, Feb, 2 when the Bobcats host Mid-American Conference East foe Akron (12-8, 4-3 MAC) at 3:30 p.m.  inside the Convocation Center. The game will be the second of the Convocation Center 50th Anniversary celebration doubleheader., with the women's basketball team taking on all State at 1 p.m. All tickets are $5 and Red Panda will perform at halftime. 

Saturday's contest will be broadcast on the WatchESPN App 'The voice of the Bobcats' Russ Eisenstein and Rob Cornelius on the call. The game will also be on the Ohio IMG Sports Network, with 'Marty Bannister on the call. Radio pregame coverage is set to begin at 3 p.m. ET with 'Countdown To Tipoff.'

#CONVO50
Ohio Athletics will be celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Convocation Center on Saturday, Feb. 2 with a Sibs Weekend basketball doubleheader as the women's team battles Ball State at 1 p.m. ET and the men's team takes on Akron at 3:30 p.m. ET. Tickets for the doubleheader are $5 and include admission to both games. Also, internationally known entertainer, Red Panda will perform at halftime of the men's game. 

The gameday atmosphere surrounding the doubleheader will have a throwback feel to it. 

Celebration elements are set to include:
• $5 tickets for admission to both games 
• Internationally known entertainer, Red Panda, to perform at halftime of the men's basketball game
• Men's team wearing 1968 throwback uniforms
• Women's team wearing 1980s throwback uniforms
• Cheer and dance teams and Rufus the Bobcat in retro gear
• Retro Ohio "Attack Cat" logo displayed on the court
• Retro music playlist
• Commemorative 50th anniversary posters for fans in attendance
• Beanies, courtesy of Integrated Services, to the first 500 fans attending the doubleheader.
• Men's basketball reunion attendees introduced to the crowd, 10 minutes before tipoff of men's game.  
• Women's basketball reunion attendees introduced to the crowd at halftime of women's game.

SCOUTING AKRON
Akron enters the game with Ohio with an overall record of 12-8 and a 4-3 conference mark. 

Overall, Akron averages 71.1 points per game, while shooting 41.7 percent from the field, 32.0 percent from three-point range and 70.3 percent from the free throw line. The Zips average 36.3 rebounds per game to go along with 12.6 assists, 5.6 steals and 2.9 blocks per game. The Zips also turn the ball over an average 11.4 times per game. Meanwhile, opponents are averaging 62.8 points per game and are shooting 40.8 percent from the field, 31.8 percent from three-point range and 64.0 percent from the free throw line. They also average 37.6 rebounds. 10.3 assists, 5.3 steals and 2.3 blocks per game, while turning the ball over an average of 14.2 times. 

Individually, Daniel Utomi leads the Zips with 14.1 points per game and is shooting 39.0 percent from the field, 35.4 percent from three-point range and 63.6 percent from the free throw line. Jimond Ivey is averaging 13.6 points per game and is shooting 51.6 percent from the field and 76.1 percent from the free throw line, while averaging a team-high 6.6 boards. Loren Crist Jackson adds 13.4 points per game and has dished out 66 assists for the Zips. 

IN AKRON'S LAST GAME
Akron last played on Saturday, Jan. 26 against NIU, downing the Huskies, 67-65 at home. 

Loren Cristian Jackson led a balanced Akron attack with 22 points, Daniel Utomi added 14 and Jimond Ivey stuffed the stat sheet with 11 points, eight rebounds, three assists and four steals, including two 3-pointers in the final minute.

Overall, Akron shot 35.7 percent from the field, 40.0 percent from three-point range, hitting 14-of-35 of them. They also shot 81.3 percent from the free throw line, while NIU shot 42.0 percent from the field, 38.1 percent from three-point range and 75.0 percent from the free throw line. Akron grabbed 33 rebounds, dished out 14 assists and had two blocks, while NIU registered 37 rebounds and dished out six assists, while turning the ball over 17 times.  

Eugene German led Northern Illinois with 23 points and senior guard Dante Thorpe added 16.

SERIES HISTORY
This is the 81st all-time meeting between Ohio and Akron, with the Zips leading the all-time series, 41-39. 

Ohio won the last meeting between the two teams, but the Zips have won the last eight of 12 matchups between the two squads. 

LAST TIME AGAINST AKRON
Ohio and Akron last met on Feb. 6, 2018 in Athens, where the Bobcats dominated the Zips, 99-75 inside the Convocation Center. 

Jordan Dartis finished the game with a career-high 38 points and was one of five Bobcats to finish in double figures in the win over the Zips. Gavin Block went 4-of-4 from the field with a three-pointer and made five of his seven free throw attempts to tally 14 points. Block also grabbed five rebounds, dished out a game-high four assists and blocked a shot in 32 minutes of work. Teyvion Kirk shot 5-of-10 from the floor and 3-of-4 from the free throw line en route to 13 points. Kirk also tallied a team-high seven rebounds and chipped in three assists and two steals in 28 minutes. James Gollon provided 13 points off of the bench, knocking down three three-pointers and making all four of his free throws. Mike Laster went 3-of-4 from the field with a three and 3-of-4 from the charity stripe en route to 10 points. Doug Taylor (Columbus, Ohio) blocked a game-high five shots and also posted three rebounds and an assist in 20 minutes of work. 

Daniel Utomi led the Zips with 21 points after going 6-of-10 from the field with four three-pointers and 5-of-6 from the free throw line. He also notched four rebounds and two steals in 27 minutes. Malcolm Duvivier finished with 15 points off of 5-of-11 shooting from the floor and a 4-of-4 effort from the charity stripe. He also blocked a shot in his 24 minutes of action. Eric Parrish added 13 points off of the bench, going 6-of-9 from the field with a trey. He also grabbed six boards in 21 minutes.

LAST TIME OUT FOR OHIO
The Bobcats are coming off of a 71-60 loss at Northern Illinois on Jan. 29. 

Jason Carter (Johnstown, Ohio) finished the game with 15 points, going 6-of-15 form the field and 3-of-4 from the free throw line, while also grabbing six rebounds. Sophomore guard Teyvion Kirk (Joliet, Ill.) finished with 10 points, going 3-of-9 from the field and 4-of-6 form the free throw line. He also grabbed six rebounds. Senior guard/forward Gavin Block (Lincoln, Ill.) finished with eight points, while senior forward Doug Taylor (Columbus, Ohio) finished with seven points and six rebounds.

Overall, Ohio shot 35.7 percent from the field, 19.2 percent from three-point range and 68.2 percent from the free throw line, while NIU shot 43.4 percent from the field, 40.0 percent from three-point range and 86.4 percent from the free throw line. Bother teams grabbed 36 rebounds, while NIU dished out 15 assists to Ohio's nine. Ohio grabbed four steals to NIU's three, with the Bobcats and Huskies both scoring 30 points in the paint. 

For NIU, Thorpe finished the game with 20 points, going 5-of-6 from the field and 4-of-4 from three-point range. Eugene German scored 15 points and dished out six assists, while Levi Bradley scored 14 points and grabbed six rebounds for NIU.

SCOUTING OHIO
The Bobcats enter the matchup with Akron with an overall record of 11-9 and a 3-5 mark in MAC play. 

Ohio is averaging 70.7 points per game. They are shooting 43.3 percent from the field, 30.0 percent from three-point range and 63.9 from the free throw line. The Bobcats are also averaging 38.7 rebounds a contest to go along with 14.2 assists, 7.2 steals and 3.8 blocks per game. 

Individually, Jason Carter is averaging 16.2 points and 7.0rebounds per game. He is shooting 47.2 percent from the field, 32.5 percent from three-point range and 73.3 percent from the free throw line. Meanwhile, Teyvion Kirk is adding 14.8 points per game 6.1 rebounds and 2.4 assists per game. 

Vander Plas is averaging 8.5 points and 5.3 rebounds while shooting 41.4 from the field and 31.6 percent from beyond the arc. 

Doug Taylor is leading the Bobcats with 7.5 rebounds and 1.8 blocks per game, while Jason Preston is shooting 48.9 percent from the field and 68.8 percent from the free throw line, while also adding 2.9 assists per game. 

CARTER'S RETURN ALREADY FELT
Carter has led the Bobcats in scoring in 14 of Ohio's 20 games, recording a double-double against Wilberforce, and scoring 24 points against Campbell. 

Carter also added a double-double against Austin Peay on Nov. 24, while trying a career-high with 25 points in that matchups and did the same thing on Dec. 1 against Marshall.  Carter added another double-double on Jan. 15 against Kent State, scoring 11 points and grabbing 13 boards. 

So far this season, Carter is averaging 16.2 points and 7.0 rebounds per game. He is shooting 47.2 percent from the field and 73.3 percent from the free throw line. He has also jumped his three-point shooting percentage, shooting 32.5 percent overall and 41.7 percent since MAC play began. 

Carter was also named the MAC East Co-Player of the Week on Dec. 3. 

Carter's presence inside has also been huge, most notably on Dec. 30 when Carter grabbed an offensive board with just under 10 seconds to go and connected on the go-ahead basket in Ohio's 68-66 victory over FIU. 

On Jan. 8 at Bowling Green, Carter hit a new career-high with five made three-point baskets. 

BIG BEN ALERT
Ben Vander Plas' addition to the lineup as also been notability. The redshirt freshman, who missed all of last season due to injury, has been the Bobcats' biggest source off the bench, scoring 16 against Wilberforce, 15 against Campbell and 10 points against LMU. 

Right now, Vander Plas' biggest impact came on Nov. 27 against Iona, where he scored a career-high 18 points and 11 rebounds to register his first career double-double. 

Vander Plas would go on to tie his career-high of 18 points on Dec. 1 against Marshall. 

On Dec. 20 at Purdue, Vander Plas led the Bobcats with 15 points and tying a career-high with four made three-pointers. 

On Jan. 26 against Ball State, Vander Plas grabbed a career-high 12 rebounds. 

Vander Plas is averaging 8.5 points and 5.3 rebounds while shooting .414 from the field and .316 from three-point range.

TK GOING FOR ROUND TWO
Currently, Kirk is second on the team with 14.8 points per game. He also added 6.1 rebounds, while shooting 41.1 percent from the field. He has also recorded 46 total assists and 31 steals for the Bobcats.  

On Dec. 15 at Detroit Mercy, Kirk drained the game-winning three-pointer with under a minute to go to lead Ohio to a 63-61 victory. 

BLOCK PARTY
Doug Taylor, who currently registers 127 blocks in his career, which moves him into sixth all-time in program history. 

Taylor needs 12 more to pass Leon Williams for fifth all-time.

OHIO IN THE MAC -TEAM
In the Mid-American Conference, the Bobcats currently rank fifth in rebounding offense (38.7), tied third in rebounding defense (34.2), third in rebounding margin (+4.5), fifth in offensive rebounds (11.5), fifth in defensive rebounds (27.3) and second in defensive rebounding percentage (.773). 

Ohio is also fourth in steals (7.2), fourth in blocked shots (3.8) and third in assists (14.1). 

OHIO IN THE MAC -INDIVIDUAL 
Individually, Carter is currently ninth in the MAC in scoring (16.2), while Taylor is ninth in rebounding (7.5) and sixth in field goal percentage (.569).

Kirk is sixth in steals (1.6), while Taylor is second in blocked shots (1.8) and second in offensive rebounds (3.1). 

REBOUNDING MACHINES
One of the Bobcats' strengths during non conference play has been their rebounding. Currently the Bobcats average 38.7 rebounds per game and have a +4.5 rebounding margin. 

Ohio has won the rebounding battle in 10 out of 18 games this season, with a season-high 56 against Wilberforce in the season opener. 

Nationally, the Bobcats rank 67th in rebounding margin, 58th in defensive rebounds, 83rd in offensive boards and 46th in total rebounds per game. Meanwhile, in the MAC, Ohio is fifth in rebounding offense (38.7), tied third in rebounding defense (34.2), third in rebounding margin (+4.5), fifth in offensive rebounds (11.5), fifth in defensive rebounds (27.3) and second in defensive rebounding percentage (.773). 

PROTECT THIS HOUSE
Ohio has registered an impressive 507-164 (.756) all-time record at the Convocation Center, which opened in 1968.

In four-plus seasons under Phillips, Ohio has gone 55-22 (.708) at home. 

This season the Bobcats are in impressive 9-2 inside the Convo. 

500 W'S IN THE CONVO
Not only is this the 50th anniversary of the opening of the Convocation Center, but another milestone was set on Nov. 12. 

With Ohio's win over Campbell, the Bobcats reached 500 victories inside the Convo. 

UP NEXT
The Bobcats will have a week off before heading to Oxford, Ohio when they take on Miami on Saturday, Feb. 9. Tip-off is set for 2 p.m. 

#BleedGreen #Convo50

 

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