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2015 MAC Tournament: Toledo, Akron advance to semis and suddenly, only four teams are left

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Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports

Finally, we're getting somewhere.

Slowly this week I've lost my mind and precious stomach lining as we all wait for UB to play another game. With each passing game I grow less and less confident. That's no good. But now, it's gameday, even if I have to find a few hours' sleep before then.

Here's today's results, as we've been doing, and how they effect UB:

Toledo Rockets 78, Eastern Michigan Eagles 67

I think asking EMU to run all the way to an exhausted final was a long shot, so I'm ok with this result. Toledo-CMU is the most likely matchup to produce a good, fatiguing game should UB advance to the final.

Fatigue Watch: Toledo looks to have gotten decent bench minutes tonight in a moderately paced game (69 possessions). Three of their starters played less than 30 minutes.

Looking at the top half of the bracket, it was unlikely once Bowling Green went down that we'd see anything but Toledo-CMU in the semi. It would be nice if Toledo won a drag-it-out battle, as Akron did today, but the eventual champion is going to have to play well on Saturday no matter what.

Akron Zips 53, Kent State Golden Flashes 51

Another sloooow game, but otherwise exactly what I could have hoped for. The Zips won over the rested Flashes, now have to play their third game in three days and fourth in five tomorrow, and even needed to spend the entire second half in comeback or one-possession mode to pull out the win.

Fatigue Watch: There's the physical fatigue of four games in five days, but I'm also hoping for a bit of mental fatigue from the comeback, tight game, and emotional lift of beating a big rivals.

Even setting that aside, the signs of physical fatigue are there: Akron shot just 5-24 from three after going gangbusters over the first three games, and were outrebounded 39-31 by the Flashes. The difference from the Zips was their defense and only three turnovers. I haven't yet watched the replay, but I'm settling in to do that now and will have a post up in the morning.

***

We're here, and the mission is clear: rebound strong, play fast, and pressure the ball. In a vacuum I probably prefer Kent over Akron, but the fatigue factor is encouraging to me.

Go Bulls.