The University at Buffalo men’s basketball team not only left Rhodes Arena on Tuesday night with another loss, 80-70, to the Akron Zips. They probably left angry as well.
The Bulls built a 36-23 lead, their largest of the game, with 3:27 left in the first half. Akron sliced that to three with a 10-0 run, with six of the points in the run coming at the foul line. Five fouls were called against UB in the final 3:40, bailing out a cold-shooting Akron team.
Akron started the second half shooting free throws after UB coach Nate Oats was called for a technical after the first half time had run out. Later, UB’s Nick Perkins picked up a personal foul and a technical with the game tied at 64-all and 6:45 left to play.
Noah Robotham made the second of his two technical free throws to put the Zips in front, 65-64, then Isaiah Johnson cashed both of his for a 67-64 lead.
The Bulls, who had fallen behind 56-45 after four straight three-point shots by Akron, never got even again.
UB went 4 minutes and 44 seconds without a field goal over the last 5:07 of the game. The loss dropped the Bulls to 7-6 and out of a five-way tie for second place in the Mid-American Conference. Akron is 10-3, including a sweep of the season series over UB.
Freshman CJ Massinburg led the UB scoring for the second game in a row, hitting for 21 points. Five-foot-11 guard Antino Jackson led Akron with 20 points.
Akron had only one more field goal than the Bulls but was 13 of 32 (40.6 percent) from three-point range. UB was only 3 of 16 (18.8). The Bulls outrebounded Akron 37-25, not including team rebounds.
Robotham was 4 for 6 and Reggie McAdams 4 for 9 on three-point attempts by Akron. Center Isaiah Johnson, all 6-10, 295 pounds of him, had 14 points and 11 rebounds in the victory.
UB will be home against Bowling Green at noon Saturday.