CLEVELAND, Ohio-The sixth largest attendance at 10,301 brought a loud, intense and rowdy atmosphere inside the Quicken Loans Arena during the 2012 First Energy Mid-American Conference Championship as Ohio earned their automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament by surpassing Akron, 64-63. A Brian Walsh missed mid-range jumper with 13 seconds remaining would allow Reggie Keely the rebound. An intentional foul sent Keely to the line to sink his foul shots and would prove to be the finisher for the Bobcats. Both teams kept the score differential close in the first half slipping from no more than six points apart and eight throughout the entire game. The Zips were ranked 10th nationally coming into tonight's contest in 3-point percentage defense (28.9) in games through March 8. Tournament MVP and First Team All-MAC member, DJ Cooper had other plans by hitting four of his nine three's. Ohio would finishing posting a 43 shooting percentage from behind the arc hitting nine of 21. Cooper went 8-16 from the field and gathered in 23 points. He also had six assists and four steals. Nick Kellogg had a solid performance hitting three of his six three-pointer attempts. MAC Defensive Player of the Year Zeke Marshall struggled for Akron by only hitting three of eight shots and gathering in only four rebounds. Marshall could nevertheless see the night as a positive by surpassing his own school record with blocks (91) on three tonight, needing only two. Alex Abreu for the Zips was the leader achieving 19 points and a perfect 5-5 shooting performance. The MAC Sixth Man of the Year Qunicy Diggs also played well by mustering together 12 points. The win for the Bobcats advances their overall record to 27-7 and Akron drops to 22-11. The NCAA Men's Tournament will be announced Sunday on ESPN.
Courtesy of MAC
MAC Tournament Final: Akron - Ohio 63-64 MAC Tournament Semifinals: Kent State - Akron 74-78 Ohio - Buffalo 77-74
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