The Bowling Green men’s basketball team currently sits at 10-10 on the year, with a 4-3 record in the Mid-American Conference.
With the second half of the season underway, the Falcons’ starting point guard feels the best is yet to come for his team.
“As we’re getting healthier we’re back in the swing of things and that’s showing up in the win column,” said Kaden Metheny, a University High graduate. “We have the talent. We just need to stay healthy and continue playing together like we have been.”
Metheny earned a starting role as soon as he set foot on the northwest Ohio campus in 2020. In this, his third year with Bowling Green though he is considered a sophomore with three years of eligibility left, Metheny is a veteran leader and the go-to guy for running the offense.
He is averaging 11.4 points per game with a total of 44 assists on the year. He leads the team in 3-point shooting with 49 triples on the year.
“Being in the system for three years now, I know the plays like the back of my hand so I know where everyone is supposed to be at,” Metheny said. “Just being more confident out on the court and allowing the guys to trust me and I show trust in those guys. I’m really blessed to be able to go out there and play and the coaches have trust in me.”
Metheny can be looked to as a confident scorer, as he netted a career-high 28 points against Norfolk State on Dec. 14. There have also been five games this season where he’s scored less than 5 points.
“I just do whatever the team needs me to do,” Metheny said. “One game, they may need me to get more looks and get shots up and score. Other games, some other guys might be hot and I’m getting the ball in their hands. Being the point guard, I have to pick up on how the game is flowing. I trust my guys that they’re going to get me the ball and they trust me to get them the ball.”
The Falcons have been on a bit of a roller coaster ride this season. They won four-straight games to close out December and open January, including a 93-74 victory against Fairmont State on Dec. 19. They’ve also suffered through a five-game losing streak and a recent three-game losing streak.
Metheny played through a brief illness in a 108-92 loss at Western Michigan on Jan. 14 and he didn’t make the trip to Buffalo on Jan. 17 in a 100-71 loss to the Bulls.
He was back on the court against Miami (OH) on Jan. 21, scoring 15 points with four rebounds and two assists in an 83-73 victory. Bowling Green is coming off another win, 83-61, against Central Michigan, where Metheny scored nine points — all on 3-pointers.
Next up is a road contest at Toledo on Saturday. Only 23 miles separate the two schools.
“They’re our rivals,” Metheny said. “It’s going to be crazy.”
The 5-foot-11, 180-pound sharpshooter feels this is truly the turning point for the Falcons. While he was sick, two other starters were dealing with injuries so some bench players worked their way into the rotation getting key reps.
Expanding the team’s depth and giving other players more confidence are things Metheny feels will help Bowling Green reach their goals over the next 11 regular season games and end the season on a high note — heights the program hasn’t seen in six decades.
“We haven’t won the MAC Tournament and made the Big Dance since 1963,” Metheny said. “To be the team to do that would be something special. It really reminds me of high school. As a freshman in high school, UHS hadn’t made the state tournament since 1968. We ended up doing that and it was one of the best feelings and one of the best moments of my life. To be able to do that at Bowling Green would almost top that.”
There are other similarities between Metheny’s time with the Hawks in high school and his current run with the Falcons in college.
In high school, he played with Ethan Ridgeway, the all-time leading scorer at UHS, in his freshman and sophomore seasons. In college, he played with Justin Turner, the all-time leading scorer in Bowling Green history who is now in the NBA G-League.
“When I came into high school as a freshman, I had so many leaders who taught me how to be a part of a winning team,” Metheny said. “I had some really great teammates who directed me along the way when I was younger. They showed me how dedicated you have to be to gain the trust of your teammates. Now, they can look up to you and trust you as a leader on the team. I’m confident that I’m doing that now.”
Off the court, Metheny is a studious business major on the fast track to graduate early. In fact, he has just one semester of coursework left before he can graduate with his bachelor’s degree.
“Nowadays, there’s a lot of online classes,” Metheny said. “But they’re getting a lot tougher the closer I am to graduating.”
He is the son of Gregg and Heidi Metheny and brother to Nathan and Treyson. Bowling Green is coached by Michael Huger in his eighth season. Coming into this year, he had an overall record of 115-105.
By Matthew Peaslee