Akron won its first game at Toledo's Savage Hall since January 8, 2000 when Dan Hipsher roamed the Zips' sideline.
The Zips kept scoring down the stretch to hold on, 70-61.
Steve McNees provided the play of the game. He stole the ball with 1:30 to play and drove coast-to-coast for a layup. That gave Akron a six-point lead. Jonathan Amos responded with a field goal. Chris McKnight drilled a mid-range jump shot to restore the lead to six.
McNees blocked an Amos shot, which Nate Linhart rebounded. Linhart handed it to Darryl Roberts, who drained two free throws to ice the game in his home town. Roberts scored 12.
After a 5-4 deficit, Akron never trailed. The Zips shot 50 percent from the field. Toledo shot 47 percent.
"That was about the worst defense we played all year," coach Keith Dambrot said on the radio postgame show. "We were a half-step slow all night. ... When a young team plays three times in five days, you're going to get a little slippage."
True freshmen Nik Cvetinovic and Brett McClanahan each scored career highs with 11 and nine, respectively.
"I've been telling you all along that McClanahan is a weapon for us," Dambrot said. "He's gonna be a good player. I'm tellin' ya. ... I'm just glad we de-redshirted him."
Brett McKnight led Akron with 12 points. Tyrone Kent led Toledo with 19 points. His counterpart, Amos, scored eight. Akron outrebounded Toledo, 34-24.
Akron improved to 3-3 in the MAC. You will hear me say this a lot over the next few weeks: A first-round bye in the MAC Tournament is what this team needs most. Only four teams get a bye. Currently, the Zips are sixth.
Three of Akron's next four games are at home. The Zips will play a struggling Central Michigan team on Saturday at noon at Rhodes Arena. I will preview the game on Friday.