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Fisher helps Kent State stun Saint Mary's

Feb 24, 2008 - 8:43 AM MORAGA, California (Ticker) -- Albert Fisher and a strong finish carried Kent State to its first win over a ranked opponent.

Fisher tied a career high with 28 points and Haminn Quaintance added 11 as the Golden Flashes extended its winning streak to six games with an impressive 65-57 victory over No. 20 Saint Mary's on Saturday.

The junior made 9-of-17 shots and connected on 9-of-10 free throws for Kent State, which improved to 1-36 all-time against ranked opponents in the regular season.

The "Bracketbuster" win helps pad the possible tournament resume for Kent State (23-5, 11-2 MAC)), which leads the Mid-American Conference by 1 1/2 games over Western Michigan (9-3).

The Golden Flashes were down for the majority of the game, trailing by two at the half and by a 46-37 score after Yusef Smith's 3-pointer with 11:37 remaining.

But Kent State slowly chipped away at the deficit and eventually took a 54-53 lead on a pair of Fisher free throws with 4:33 left to play.

After the Gaels (23-4) went back in front by one, Quaintance made a layup to give Kent State the lead for good.

Saint Mary's missed eight of its final nine shots and could get no closer than five points over the final minute as Mike Scott and Fisher each made a pair of free throws to help the Golden Flashes - who ended the game on an 11-2 run - seal the victory.

The Gaels shot just 33 percent (21-of-64), including 3-of-16 from the arc.

Diamon Simpson had 24 points and 15. rebounds to lead Kent State, which had its six-game winning streak snapped.

Freshman leading scorer Patrick Mills scored just five points on 2-of-11 shooting - his second-lowest total of the season.

The Golden Flashes led by as many as seven midway through the first half before Simpson brought Saint Mary's back.

Simpson scored all 10 points during a 10-0 spurt that gave the Gaels a 27-24 lead late in the first half, and Saint Mary's took a two-point lead into the locker room.