By Stephanie Storm Beacon Journal sports writer
''Come on, guys, let's get going,'' Ford jokingly urged a group of reporters. ''My enjoyment of Rod Sherman's play just ended.''
The play Ford was referring to was junior guard Rodriquez Sherman's stunning coast-to-coast, one-handed tomahawk that drew a foul with 2.4 seconds left and emphatically handed the host Flashes a 74-73 victory.
But as much as KSU players and coaches would have preferred to revel just a little bit in Saturday's big win, Ford was well aware the team had a mere 48 hours to prepare for its next test in visiting Northern Illinois tonight at 7 at the M.A.C. Center.
''It was an unbelievable play,'' Ford said. ''I don't know that I've ever seen a game end on something like that.''
With the unforgettable win, Kent State continues to own a share of first place with rival Akron in the Mid-American Conference's East Division with a 5-2 league mark and 14-7 overall record.
Meanwhile, Northern Illinois has slipped into third place in the MAC West Division at 8-11 and 4-3.
While the Golden Flashes are riding a four-game winning streak with victories over Buffalo, Akron and Toledo before Saturday's win over the Broncos, the Huskies are headed the other way, mired in a three-game losing streak.
Northern Illinois has proven to be a streaky team all season, owning losing streaks of two, five and now three. But the Huskies have also pieced together winning spurts of two and a season-high of five before the trio of losses to Central Michigan, Ohio and Buffalo.
Although the Huskies' Xavier Silas led all scorers Saturday against visiting Buffalo with 27 points (the junior guard's eighth output of 20 or more points this season), the Bulls still easily cruised to a 95-83 victory.
''We were right there at times,'' NIU head coach Ricardo Patton said after the game. ''When we went to the bench, we didn't get the production we have seen in the past. We've got to get more production there.''
In comparison, points off the bench have been one of KSU's main strengths all season, with points coming from nearly every player to touch the ball most games. In fact, the Flashes' reserves have almost always outscored their opponents' subs, including recently getting 19 points off the bench against the Broncos.
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