The opening game for Eastern Michigan’s “Super Hero” Day did not disappoint. Fans sat side by side with Captain Marvel, Wonder Woman, Captain America, Spider-Man and other super heroes as they cheered on the hometown Eagles taking on Mid-American Conference foe, Akron.
The 12-11 Eagles and 10-12 Zips have both hovered around the .500 mark much of the season and each desperately needed a strong showing in final pushes towards the conference tournament early next month in Cleveland, Ohio.
Akron started strong and EMU fell behind by double digits going into halftime, but a strong performance by junior guard Areanna Combs gave the Eagles and raucous crowd new life in the second half.
The Eagles nearly lost Combs after a nasty fall going up for a rebound where she appeared to hit her head directly on the hardwood as she came down hard. She was able to return, however, after a few minutes and reignite the her team with a big three point play that got everyone off the bench and to their feet.
Unfortunately for the home team, the Eagles began to cool down and struggled to convert lightly contested shots in the paint and some wide open three point attempts. Making matters worse, the Zips caught fire and seemed unable to miss with bucket after bucket coming from Kendall Miller, Haliegh Reinoehl and Vari Caitlin.
The scoring surge extended the Akron lead and the Zips held on for the 64-53 win. The victory marked the second win over EMU in recent weeks, with the prior game going into OT.
Akron improves to 11-12 and EMU drops to 12-12. Akron will next play a struggling Buffalo (13-10) team that started conference play strong, but has lost five straight. Eastern Michigan has a significantly tougher matchup against MAC #2 Ball State (17-7).