The Zips (3-7, 2-4 Mid-American Conference) took an early lead when Zach D'Orazio caught a lateral screen from Kyle Pohl and threw a 33-yard touchdown pass to L.T. Smith.
The Golden Flashes (2-8, 1-5) tied up the game midway through the second quarter when Trayion Durham ran for a three-yard score.
Stein kicked a late 28-yard field goal to give Akron a 10-7 halftime lead. He added field goals of 27 and 29 in the fourth quarter to make it a two-possession game.
Akron shut the door on Kent State in the fourth quarter as Johnny Robinson, Malachi Freeman and Martel Durant each intercepted Colin Reardon, halting the last three drives of the game.
Kent State finished with five turnovers.
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