BOWLING GREEN - In the eyes of coach Dan Dakich, there was not a whole lot to like about Bowling Green State University's 101-86 exhibition victory over Argentina Select yesterday at Anderson Arena - other than the final score.
“I don't want to come out ripping guys, but I was just really disappointed in the way we played,” Dakich said. “I didn't like a whole lot of what I saw today. We just didn't play well.”
The Falcons trailed Argentina early, then went on top midway through the first half on a couple of scores off offensive rebounds by Josh Almanson. A basket by freshman Germain Fitch, breaking down the lane in the final minute of the half, helped BG to a 44-34 lead at the break.
Dakich sent senior Keith McLeod to the locker room early in the second half after tempers flared when McLeod got tangled up with Argentina's Pablo Hoya after he was fouled by Hoya. Argentina whittled the lead to five with about six minutes left, but Bowling Green opened it up again as sophomore Jabari Mattox repeatedly broke the opposition's press.
Dakich was upset that his team allowed Argentina, a team that had lost Saturday to Detroit by 41, to shoot 60 percent from the field and score 52 second-half points.
“What was missing was the life, it was the enthusiasm, it was the heart, it was the way in which the game was played that was so disappointing,” Dakich said. “I have high expectations for myself and for our team, and disappointing is the best word for me to use. We've worked on defense and worked on defense and we gave up 52 points in the second half - and that is really disappointing.”
Len Matela had 21 points to lead BG. Almanson scored 12 and Fitch, one of four freshmen who played, added 11.
“I thought Almanson's play in the first half was really good, and I thought our freshmen as a whole played all right,” Dakich said. “But I don't think we got a whole lot out of a lot of people who have been here before.”
The Falcons host Shawnee State Thursday in their final exhibition game before opening the season against Mississippi on Nov. 15 in a tournament in Alaska.