We started with eight, but only four remain.
Bowling Green, Toledo, Ball State and Kent State survived after the first round of tournament play for the Mid-American Conference (MAC) championship. Here is a scouting report for each team closing in on a championship.
Bowling Green is in rare air, having five players averaging in the double-digits for points.
Senior Elissa Brett leads the Falcons, she averages 14.4 points per game. Following is senior Allison Day with 12.7 points per game. Junior Nyla Hampton is at 11 points per game, senior Morgan Sharps averages 10.4 and is closely followed by sophomore Jocelyn Tate with 10.1.
Brett is also on the All-MAC first team as a player. Day was named to the All-MAC second team. Both Brett and Hampton were named to the All-defensive team as well. Hampton was also named the Defensive Player of the Year.
Bowling Green has been able to force turnovers at a high rate this season, averaging 22 forced turnovers per game. To help with that stat, the Falcons also have an average of 23.3 points scored off of those turnovers per game.
Watching the Falcons as well have a high-paced offense and are able to get to the paint and have a lot of layups for points.
With their offensive play, they have been able to outscore teams by an average of 14.7 points per game. Their season high for points was 102 points total against Wright St. The Falcons are also averaging 7.3 three-pointers.
In their opening matchup against Eastern Michigan, they were able to easily handle the Eagles 70-36. A score margin that wide in a conference tournament is almost unheard of.
With winning the regular season in the MAC, Toledo has rightfully deserved all the credit they have got.
The Rockets have the Coach of the Year Tricia Cullop and also Player of the Year senior Quinesha Lockett, who doubled with being on the All-MAC first team. Senior Sophia Wiard earned herself a spot on the All-MAC third team. Junior Khera Goss was named to the All-defensive team.
Toledo on paper is a really well-put-together and complete team, able to play down in the post, able to hit mid-range shots, and able to hit threes.
Lockett is leading the Rockets with 18 points per game. Sammi Mikonowicz averages 10.4 points per game and is closely followed by Wiard who averages 10.2 points per game.
Toledo ended the regular season with 13 straight wins as well, leading them to win the conference in the regular season.
With Lockett being so highly regarded, she truly is the most important player on the court for Toledo and has the ability to facilitate the basketball and also be an efficient scorer (obviously with her 18-points-per-game average).
Given their high regard, Toledo did have a scare yesterday against No. 8 Buffalo. The game ended in an overtime nail-biter that resulted in Toledo winning 75-74. Once again shows that in the MAC any team can beat anyone in March.
No. 4 seed Kent State has nobody on the first team and second team but has found itself winning 20 games in the regular season. Senior Katie Shumate was named to the All-MAC third team while graduate student Lindsey Thall was named an honorable mention.
Shumate leads the team and averages 12.3 points per game. Thall averages 11.4 points per game.
The Golden Flashes average 8.4 threes per game and are shooting them at 35 percent from the field.
In the first-round matchup, Toledo faced Northern Illinois, a team they have beaten two times already this season in conference play. The most recent meeting is just days away on March 4 saw Kent State beat the Huskies 73-58.
At the end of the first round, Kent State would beat NIU for the third time this season 75-68 and advance to the semifinals.
Head coach Brady Sallee had two players make an All-MAC team and one make an honorable mention.
Redshirt senior Anna Clephane was named to the All-MAC first team while sophomore Ally Becki was named to the All-MAC second team. The third player was graduate student Thelma Dis Agustsdottir who made an honorable mention.
Clephane leads the team average with 15.2 points per game. Dis Agustsdottir is second with 12.5 points per game followed closely with 11.5 points per game. Sophomore Madelyn Bischoff just averaged over double-digits with 10.4 points per game.
Ball State is just under Kent State with 8.2 three-pointers made per game with only 39 more three-pointers attempted with 755.
Ball State like Bowling Green runs its offense at a fast pace, running the ball a lot up the court either to get an open layup or be able to kick out for a three.
Like the Falcons, the Cardinals have been able to force turnovers all season, they are averaging 17.4 forced turnovers per game.
Their last contest went into overtime and saw the Falcons come away with an 81-76 win.
With so many comparisons to Bowling Green, Ball State will face them March 10 at approximately 12:30 p.m.