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Northern Illinois (11-12) at Akron (16-8)



The Sports Network

DATE & TIME: Saturday, February 15, 7 p.m. (ET)

FACTS & STATS: Site: James A. Rhodes Arena (5,500) -- Akron, Ohio. Television: None. Home Record: NIU 6-7, Akron 9-1. Away Record: NIU 5-5, Akron 6-5. Neutral Record: NIU 0-0, Akron 1-2. Conference Record: NIU 5-6, Akron 8-3. Series Record: Akron leads, 20-9.

GAME NOTES: Coming off a slight stumble, the Akron Zips will try to return to form when they take on the Northern Illinois Huskies in a Mid-American Conference clash at James A. Rhodes Arena.

Northern Illinois is suddenly hot, with wins in four of its last five games, including a resounding 88-63 triumph over Central Michigan on Wednesday. The Huskies are within a game of the .500 level both overall (11-12) and in conference (5-6). They will return home to host Eastern Michigan next.

Akron failed to score in the final minute en route to a 57-54 loss to Western Michigan on Wednesday. The loss snapped a two-game win streak for the Zips, who are still in the mix at the top of the MAC standings, tied with Buffalo for first place in the East Division (8-3). They are gearing up for a critical game with the Bulls in their next outing.

The Zips have won each of the last two meetings with the Huskies, as they get set to face off for the first and only time this season. Akron also leads the all-time series, 20-9.

Darrell Bowie scored 19 points and added eight rebounds to lead four players in double figures, as Northern Illinois ran over Central Michigan. The Huskies hit a blistering 57.7 percent from the field and owned an incredible 39-19 advantage on the glass.

Northern Illinois is not a team that is expected to have such hot shooting nights often. The Huskies are last in the MAC in field goal percentage (.395) as well as scoring (63.3 ppg) and assists (8.7 apg). They have done better work on the glass, however, leading the conference in rebounding (37.6 rpg). Bowie (9.8 ppg, 6.6 rpg) amounts to the leading scorer for the Huskies, who do not feature a player averaging in double figures. Bowie could stand to improve his shooting, as he is netting only 36.7 percent from the floor. Travon Baker (9.2 ppg, .364 FG percentage) could also be scoring better with improved efficiency.

Akron was tied with Western Michigan, 54-54, with just over a minute to play in regulation. However, the Zips missed their only two field goal attempts in the last minute, while the Broncos got three free-throws to fall. In total, the Zips only hit on 33.3 percent from the floor.

For Akron, the offensive end of the court has not been its strength. The Zips are netting just 68.2 ppg, while shooting only 42.9 percent from the field. However, they have managed to be one of the contenders in the MAC by tightening up on defense, letting up 66 ppg on 42.4 percent shooting. Demetrius Treadwell (14.1 ppg, 8.8 rpg) leads the way on offense and the glass. In fact, no other player nets more than 4.5 rpg. Quincy Diggs (12.2 ppg) is the only other contributor in double figures. Treadwell tallied 16 points and 12 rebounds on Wednesday, while Diggs had nine points on just 3- of-13 from the floor.

Akron is very much alive in the MAC title chase. Northern Illinois may be an improved unit from the one the Zips faced last year, but not enough to top a team that is 9-1 in league play.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Akron 72, Northern Illinois 61

02/15 10:48:01 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
NCSU 24
GASO 23
Final
DUKE 52
ELON 13
 
Final
UNC 56
LBRTY 29
 
7:05pm Tonight
NOR 4
DUR 1
 
3rd
ECU 37
NCCU 7
 
Final
TOR 2
NYY 0
Final
CWS 6
DET 3
Final
STL 1
CHC 5
Final
PIT 3
CIN 2
Final
BAL 3
MIN 2
 
Final
TAM 7
BOS 0
 
10th
KAN 1
CLE 1
 
Final
CWS 4
DET 8
 
Final
ATL 0
MIA 4
 
Final
NYM 2
PHI 7
 
Final
HOU 2
TEX 0
9th
ARI 0
COL 2
 
8th
STL 4
CHC 1
 
7th
SDP 1
LOS 1
 
5th
SFG 3
MIL 0
 
4th
ANA 0
OAK 0
 
5th
SEA 0
WAS 3
 
Final
MICH 52
APPST 14
Final
NAVY 17
OSU 34
Final
UAB 48
TROY 10
Final
UVA 20
UCLA 28
Final
PURD 43
WMICH 34
Final
NCSU 24
GASO 23
Final
UMASS 7
BC 30
Final
NW 24
CAL 31
Final
NEB 55
FATL 7
Final
UMO 27
MARS 42
Final
ND 48
RICE 17
Final
MIZZ 38
SDST 18
Final
ALA 33
WVU 23
Final
AUB 45
ARK 21
Final
STAN 45
UCD 0
Final
UGA 45
CLEM 21
 
Final
UNC 56
LBRTY 29
 
Final
KSU 14
OHIO 17
 
4th
OKLA 48
LATU 16
 
4th
KST 55
SAUST 16
 
4th
USC 52
FRES 13
 
4th
MSST 49
SMISS 0
 
3rd
OKST 17
FSU 20
 
4th
TEX 28
UNT 0
 
4th
NMU 21
UTEP 24
 
8:05pm Tonight
UF 0
IDAHO 0
2nd
LSU 7
WISC 17
 
10:30pm Tonight
OREG
SD
10:30pm Tonight
HAW
WASH
Final
DUKE 52
ELON 13
 
3rd
ECU 37
NCCU 7
 
7:05pm Tonight
NOR 4
DUR 1