Oliva Trice and Kadie Hempfling

The Bowling Green women’s basketball team continues their surprising start to the season with a blowout 89-55 win on Saturday over Ball State. The Falcons are off to their best start in years, and sit at 3-0 in the MAC and 7-1 overall while Ball State dropped to 1-2 in the MAC and 3-4 overall.

The Falcons put together maybe their best offensive performance of the year, combined with their usually stifling defense. Freshman standout Lexi Fleming was her usual self, scoring 19 points on 6 of 9 shooting, including 4 of 5 from the three point line and dictated the offense for the Falcons while fellow freshman Nyla Hampton had the best game of her young career, playing 34 minutes and racking up 18 points to go along with five rebounds and four assists. 

The Falcons have struggled to find a second scoring option with Fleming this year, but Hampton is looking like she could potentially fill that void.

Both teams struggled for the majority of the opening period, but the Falcons pulled away on a 11-0 run to end the quarter. Senior Madisen Parker, who had a fantastic game off the bench with 15 points, hit two long-range tries to spark the run that ended the quarter with a 19-8 Falcons advantage. 

The Falcons continued the three point barrage in the second quarter, hitting three quick three pointers to start the period. However, the Falcons did cool off and made just two more field goals in the quarter, but also held the Cardinals to 4 of 14 from the field with great defense and took a 36-20 lead into the break.

After half, the Falcons came out smoking hot. They pushed ahead relying on the steady hand of Fleming and the impact energy of Hampton and Parker. Bowling Green broke the game open near the end of the quarter. After being locked in at 50-30 in the Falcons advantage in the middle of the quarter, the Falcons outscored the Cardinals 18-7 to end the third quarter, making it 68-37 and effectively putting the game out of reach.

the fourth quarter, the Falcons began to empty the bench and young players including the likes of Macy Spielman and Olivia Hill. Bowling Green outscored Ball State in every quarter, and that trend continued in the fourth quarter as the Falcons outpaced the Cardinals 21-18 to wrap up a commanding 89-55 win. 

A significant trend in the game was the Falcons swarming defense forcing a mind-boggling 29 turnovers and outsourcing the Cardinals 38-8 in points off turnovers. The Falcons also were very efficient from the line, going 24 of 31 from the line for a clip of over 77% while Ball State went just 12 of 22  (54%).

The Falcons will look to remain unbeaten in MAC action on Wednesday, when they travel to Kalmazoo to face a struggling Western Michigan team who is winless in conference play.

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