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Buffalo struggles late in each half and lose a squeaker to Ohio

Guess what.... The half is 20 minutes!

Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

If College Basketball had 12 minute halved UB would be unbeatable. But unfortunately it's a forty minute game and because of that what should be solid wins turn into painful heart breaking losses.

Such was the case tonight when in each half Ohio used the last six to eight minutes to erase huge UB leads. In the end it means a three point loss by Buffalo who could have pulled even with Toledo in the Mid American Conference.

After Ohio opened up an early 5 point lead on a Three Point Jumper by Travis Wilkins the Bulls began to climb back in to the game and take the lead. Ohio was focused on McCrea and kept the UB star to eight first half points. But while they were guarding McCrea with multiple Bobcat defenders UB got solid production from Xavier Ford, Jarod Oldham, Joshua Freelove, and Will Regan. Shannon Evans also played well off the bench.

Over the course of the next 15 minutes UB would turn the table on Ohio and go from a 5 point deficit to a nine point lead. Then with about 3:30 left the wheels started to come off for Buffalo. During the last three and a half minutes of the first half the Bulls were on the wrong side of a 13-2 run.

During the run Buffalo was 0-3 from the floor, 2-4 from the free throw line, committed two turnovers and two fouls. When the half closed out Ohio led Buffalo 37-35

It was the type of lead collapse that Buffalo fans have seen throughout the year but against a squad as strong as Ohio such a span can often be the difference between winning and losing.

Then in the second half the Bulls and Bobcats put on a repeat performance with UB putting on a show through the first 15 minutes to take a 10 point lead with about seven minutes left. And once again before you could Blink the Bobcats turned that ten point Buffalo lead into a two point UB deficit.

That turned the last four minutes of the game into the most important four minutes of the game. It was also the most competitive four minutes of the game. With Buffalo up one and a minute left Will Regan had a chance to grow the lead from the foul line but missed the front end of a one and one.

Ohio took the ball down and scored and the Bulls would air ball their next possession. Once again the Bobcats scored and put UB down 3 with tend seconds. UB could not hit the three and the game was over.