MAC Tournament Final Preview Print E-mail
Written by Deb Ruthenberg   
Saturday, March 15 2008
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ImageThe MAC's top seed, Kent State, advanced to the Mid-American Conference Tournament championship game by defeating defending champion Miami and will meet third-seeded Akron in an all-Northeast Ohio final following Akron's victory over MAC West champion Western Michigan Friday night at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland. 

Here is a snapshot preview of tonight's finals matchup.


(1) Kent State vs (3) Akron
Tip-off: 7:00


zips_small.jpg AKRON:
Overall Record:  23-9 (11-5 MAC), 2nd MAC East 
Leading Scorer:  Jeremiah Wood (14.0 ppg)
Leading Rebounder:  Jeremiah Wood (7.9 rpg)           
Sleeper to watch out for:  Brett McKnight

The Zips' Road to the Semi-Finals:  
Quarterfinals: AKRON 81, CENTRAL MICHIGAN 60.  
Semifinals:  AKRON 73, WESTERN MICHIGAN 62.

KSU_NoText_Color_small.jpgKENT STATE
Overall Record:  27-6 (13-3 MAC), 1st MAC East
Leading Scorer: Al Fisher (14.2 ppg)
Leading Rebounder:  Haminn Quaintance (7.4 rpg) 
Sleeper to watch out for: Rashad Woods

The Golden Flashes' Road to the Semi-Finals:  
Quarterfinals: KENT STATE 77, TOLEDO 57. 
Semifinals:  KENT STATE 49, MIAMI 47.

Previous meetings:  The Zips and Flashes have met twice this year with Kent State sweeping the season series against Akron. The Golden Flashes downed Akron in Kent, 75-69 on January 23 and then topped the Zips again in the regular-season finale in Akron, 61-58 on MAC Player of the Year Al Fisher's three-pointer with less than three seconds remaining.

NCAA Tournament Implications:
Kent State enters the championship game with an RPI of 24 and has likely secured a spot in this year's NCAA Tournament regardless of the outcome of tonight's game.

Akron enters the conrtest with an RPI of 74 and will need a victory in tonight's championship tilt to secure the MAC's automatic bid.

MAC Tournament Championship Game History:
Kent State:
This will be Kent State's tenth appearance in the championship game of the MAC Tournament. The Golden Flashes are 4-5 all-time in the MAC Tournament's final game and have appeared in five of the last seven championship contests, including making an appearance in the finals in four staight years from 2001-2004.

Akron: The Zips will be making their second straight appearance in the MAC title tilt. The Zips are 0-1 all time in the MAC Touranment Finals, losing in 2007, 53-52 to Miami.

The Coaches:
Keith Dambrot (198-106 overall; 90-36 at Akron, fourth year). MAC Tournament Record: 5-3.

Kent State: Jim Christian (137-57, sixth year). MAC Tournament Record: 11-4

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