BOWLING GREEN - Last night's game against Notre Dame (Ohio) College went the way coach Dan Dakich hopes Bowling Green State University's season will develop.
At first, the Falcons were tentative and seemed unsure which strategy to use to beat the NAIA Division II school. Once they figured it out, the contest was much more easily handled.
BGSU won 81-50 in Anderson Arena last night. Four players scored in double figures for BGSU, Martin Samarco leading everyone with 17 points.
The Falcons' injuries and inexperience at the beginning of the year made their non-conference season like training camp. Dakich said although improvements still have to be made in nearly every area, the progress is coming.
"The only thing that doesn't concern me is our effort," Dakich said. "We're going to have bad nights, we're going to have good nights and everything in between. But if a consistent effort is there, we're going to eventually get it to where we're going to be a difficult team to play against. But we're not there yet."
After a brief period at the start, the Falcons (4-6) began pounding the ball in to center Matt Lefeld, who at 6-feet-11 was six inches taller than any player Notre Dame brought.
"The guy who changed the game was Dusan [Radivojevic], being on top of the zone and throwing the ball into Matt," Dakich said.
The first half brought a bit of suspense, as Notre Dame led 19-18 with
7:32 left in the period. But any question of the winner was ended when BGSU went on a 15-2 run to end the period, Lefeld adding seven in the streak.
In the second half, freshman forward Erik Marschall showed athleticism in the post with a few spin moves and aggressiveness on the boards. Marschall, the leading freshman in the MAC averaging 10 points a game, scored 12 points and had six rebounds.
"We've got to have an inside-out game, because we've got some shooters," Marschall said. "
Libbey grad Jerome Pierce led Notre Dame with 16 points, including four treys. Two of the 3s got Notre Dame (7-10) started, but Pierce received his third foul with 6:22 left in the first.
Until the walk-ons got in the game, BG had turnovers in single digits. BGSU forced 25 Notre Dame turnovers, scoring 34 points off them. BG caused a Notre Dame shot clock violation and a five-second violation.
"After the first five minutes, I thought we locked in pretty good and played some pretty good defense," Dakich said.
MAC play begins Wednesday for the Falcons when they host Central Michigan at 6 p.m.
"I think we're ready for the MAC season, to play guys we know a little bit more about," Marschall said.
NOTES: City League products Pierce and BGSU guard John Floyd (St. John's Jesuit) occasionally guarded each other. Pierce, a sophomore at Notre Dame, leads his team, averaging 19.7 points Lefeld tied his high with nine rebounds. He has scored in double figures the past four games The Falcons shot 45 percent on 3-pointers.
Contact Maureen Fulton at:
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