Wednesday's MAC Men's Basketball Results
Ohio 87, Kent State 65
Ball State 73, Central Michigan 53
Buffalo 82, Akron 70
Eastern Michigan 62, Western Michigan 59 (OT)
Bowling Green 65, Miami 57
Toledo 71, Northern Illinois 41
Stories courtesy of MAC Sports Information Departments
Ohio 87, Kent State 65
ATHENS, Ohio – Kent State (12-5; 2-2 MAC) suffered an 87-65 loss at Ohio (14-4; 2-2 MAC) on Wednesday night despite shooting 70 percent from the field in the first half.
The Golden Flashes were 14-20 from the field in the opening stanza, but the hot shooting performance wasn’t enough for the team which still trailed, 41-38 at the break. In the second half Kent State cooled off which while Ohio heated up creating a bad combination for the Golden Flashes. The Bobcats held a 46-27 advantage in the second half breaking the game open with a 21-0 run over a seven minute stretch that began shortly after the half was underway.
Kent State would get as close as 18 before the final outcome was decided.
The Golden Flashes were led by junior Chris Evans (Chesapeake, Va.) who scored 18 points on 8-11 from the field. He was joined in double-figures by senior guard Michael Porrini (Massillon, Ohio) (14 points, 5 assists) and senior forward Justin Greene (Brooklyn, N.Y.) (10 points, 6 rebounds).
Ohio had 5 players score 10+ points led by Walter Offutt with 19 and D.J. Cooper with 18. Despite Kent State having a better shooting percentage from the field, 53% to 44%, Ohio capitalized on its 3-pointers as they went 11-21 from beyond the arc (52.4%), while Kent State shot a 23%, (3-13).
Kent State travels to Akron on Saturday for a 6:00 pm game. Be sure to follow the action live throughout the season on WNIR 100.1 FM.
Ball State 73, Central Michigan 53
MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. – Behind career-high efforts from sophomores Tyrae Robinson (Gary, Ind./Bowman Academy) and Tyler Koch (Winchester, Ind./Wright State), the Ball State men’s basketball team posted a 73-52 victory over Mid-American Conference rival Central Michigan Wednesday evening at McGuirk Arena. The victory keeps the Cardinals in first place in the MAC with a 3-1 league record, tied with Eastern Michigan and Akron.
“Our practice the past two days really set the tone for what we saw tonight,” head coach Billy Taylor said. “Our guys really competed hard the past two days and they carried that intensity over to the game. We got back to the things that are important to us tonight – defending the way we come to expect for the program and rebounding the basketball with authority. We won both of those areas today and that allowed us to get out in transition for some easy points.”
Robinson, who previous career-high was 14 points (at Morehead State), set a new career mark just 13:19 into the game as he scored 15 of the Cardinals’ first 26 points on his way to a game-high 20 points in 26 minutes of action. He connected on 8-of-10 from the field, including 2-of-3 from three-point land.
Koch notched his new career mark with 17 points and seven rebounds in 31 minutes of play, surpassing his previous high of 14 points (vs. Calumet). He connected on 7-of-10 from the field, including three three-pointers, while also tying for the team lead on the glass. His effort helped the Cardinals out-rebound the Chippewas 40-24 in the victory.
Ball State connected on 54.2 percent (26-of-48) from the field in the victory and hit 39.1 percent (9-of-23) from three-point land. The Cardinals dished out 18 assists on their 26 baskets with senior guard Randy Davis (Plymouth, Ind./Plymouth) leading the way with a game-high 10 assists.
Ball State, the top-rated defense in the MAC, limited the Chippewas to just 33.9 percent (19-of-56) shooting from the field and just 26.1 percent (6-of-23) from long range. Central Michigan only recorded four assists on the night.
Robinson came out of the gate on fire as he scored the 10 of the Cardinals’ first 12 points, including the first eight to open the game. The Cardinals held an early 10-9 lead before breaking the half open with a dominant 16-3 run to take a 26-12 lead with 6:41 left.
The Cardinals started to hit from the outside during the run as Davis and junior Jauwan Scaife (Muncie, Ind./Muncie Central) hit back-to-back three-pointers. Koch added the Cardinals’ third triple of the run while Robinson continued his dominant play with seven more points, including an old-fashioned three-point play to cap the spurt.
Ball State (11-5, 3-1 MAC) closed out the half on a 9-3 run to take a 38-22 lead into the locker room. Koch scored five points in the stretch and the Cardinals hit four free throws in the final five minutes while limiting the Chippewas to just a three-pointer from Olivier Mbaigoto.
Ball State connected on 52.0 percent (13-of-25) from the field and 46.2 percent (6-of-13) from three-point land in the first half. The Cardinals out-rebounded the Chippewas by a 20-13 margin and dished out 10 first half assists. Robinson led all scorers with 15 points in 16 minutes as he was 6-of-7 from the field for a new career-high in scoring.
Central Michigan (7-10, 2-2 MAC) was limited to just 32.0 percent (8-of-25) shooting in the first half and just 27.3 percent (3-of-11) from long range. Austin McBroom led the Chippewas with five points while Mbaigoto also added five points.
Ball State dominated play in the second half as it maintained its double-digit lead and led by as many as 25 points in the second half. The Cardinals never allowed Central Michigan closer than 15 points in the second half as they hit 56.5 percent (13-of-23) from the field and limited the Chippewas to just 35.5 percent (11-of-31).
Davis finished the game with seven points, seven rebounds and 10 assists in 28 minutes of action as the Cardinals had six players with at least six points in the victory. Sophomore Jesse Berry (Lafayette, Ind./Jefferson) added 11 points in 26 minutes off the bench as he was 4-of-5 from the field. Sophomore Chris Bond (Gary, Ind./Bowman Academy) added eight points and four rebounds for the Cardinals.
Central Michigan was led by McBroom who scored 16 points, including three three-pointers. Mbaigoto and Derek Jackson each added seven points while Trey Zeigler was held to six points and seven rebounds.
The Cardinals continue their two-game road swing Saturday night as they take on the Northern Illinois Huskies in DeKalb. The game is set for an 8 p.m. (ET) tip-off and will be broadcast on the Ball State Sports Network (BSSN).
Buffalo 82, Akron 70
BUFFALO, N.Y. – Nikola Cvetinovic became the 39th player in Akron basketball history to score 1,000 career points, but his 17 points on the night were not enough as the Zips fell 82-70 to Buffalo on Wednesday.
Cvetinovic tied Quincy Diggs for the team lead, closing the game shooting 6-of-9 from the field, 4-of-4 from the line and added eight boards. Diggs was 6-of-12 from the field. Zeke Marshall was the only other player for Akron (11-7, 3-1 MAC) in double figures with 13 points.
Both teams struggled with ball control, combining for 34 turnovers. The Zips shot 43.8 percent from the floor (28-of-64) and had 15 assists to 18 turnovers. The Bulls held a slim 37-36 advantage on the boards.
Zach Filzen led all scorers with 21 points for Buffalo (9-6, 2-2 MAC).
Akron opened the second half on the offensive, opening the half on an 11-3 run to cut the Buffalo lead to 43-41 with 15:58 left in the game. The Bulls would answer, pushing their advantage back to 10 points (55-45) by the 11:52 mark.
The Buffalo lead grew to 14 points (61-47) with 9:12 to go in the contest before Akron rattled off nine-straight points to cut the advantage to 61-56 with 7:52 left. Heading into the final media timeout (3:34), the Akron deficit would be four points (69-65).
Akron would cut the lead to three points (72-69) with 1:35 left in the game but Filzen’s 3-pointer with 1:15 on the clock would give Buffalo a six-point lead (75-69) that the Zips would not overcome.
Both teams opened the game shooting well from long range, making a combined 4-of-5 early on (2-of-3 for the Zips). The score remained tied (10-10) at the 15:11 mark of the half. From there, the squads would go bucket-for-bucket as neither team could gain an advantage of more than two points.
At the 9:00 minute mark, Cvetinovic became the 39th player in Akron history to score 1,000 career points on a lay-up in the paint.
As halftime neared, the Bulls were able to open up a five-point advantage on several occasions, but the Zips answered every time with a bucket of their own. Buffalo pushed its advantage to 39-30 with 51.7 seconds left in the half before taking a 40-32 advantage into the locker room.
Cvetinovic led all players with 11 points, going 3-of-4 from the field and 4-of-4 from the charity stripe. Diggs pitched in with 10 points on 4-of-7 shooting.
Despite both teams shooting the ball well in the opening frame, the Zips and Bulls combined for 20 turnovers (10 each).
Akron returns home on Saturday, Jan. 21, to play host to neighborhood rival Kent State at Rhodes Arena as part of the PNC Wagon Wheel Challenge. The game will tip at 6 p.m. ET and will air on SportsTime Ohio. Fans are also encouraged to wear white as game has been designated as a White Out contest.
Eastern Michigan 62, Western Michigan 59 (OT)
YPSILANTI, Mich. (EMUEagles.com) — It was a battle for first place in the Mid-American Conference West Division here Wednesday, Jan. 18, in the Convocation Center and the Eastern Michigan University men's basketball team came up with a hard-fought 62-59 overtime thriller.
The two teams combined to put on a great show for the fans and in the end it was some great clutch shooting by both teams and hard-nosed defense and strong foul shooting down the stretch that helped Eastern record the win.
Senior guard Antonio Green (Inkster, Mich.-Dearborn Heights Robichaud) hit a long three from the top of the arc with just 4.6 seconds left in regulation to give Eastern a 53-50 lead.
Western's Nate Hutcheson then connected on a three from deep in the right corner at the buzzer to tie it at 53-all, forcing the overtime period.
Eastern would go up by four, 59-55, with 1:20 left in overtime, but Matt Stainbrook would cut it to one, 59-58 win 1:06 left on a three-point play the old-fashioned way, making a layup and adding the foul shot on the play.
Junior forward Jamell Harris (Euclid, Ohio-Euclid) would then make the second of two free throws to put the Eagles up by two, 60-58, with 41.9 seconds remaining in overtime.
Green would then get another chance to put it out of reach, making both ends of a two-shot foul for a 62-58 EMU lead with just 17.9 left. Western's Demetrius Ward would then make two free throws to cut it to three, 62-59, with nine seconds left and the Broncos forced a turnover, giving them one more chance to tie it. This time around Western's Hutcheson 's three-point chance at the buzzer was off line, giving Eastern the three-point victory.
Green led the Eagles, now 8-10 overall and 3-1 in the MAC, with 11 points while redshirt sophomore guard J.R. Sims (Ft, Wayne, Ind.-Snider) added 10 and sophomore guard Austin Harper (Grand Haven, Mich.-Grand Haven-Glen Oaks C.C.) had three points with seven assists while celebrating his 21st birthday.
Western, now 8-10 overall and 2-2 in MAC action, was led by Hutcheson with a game-high 23 while Stainbrook added 12.
Hutcheson staked Western to a quick 5-0 lead to start the game on a three from the top of the arc and a two-point bucket.
The Broncos would build on that lead and go up seven, 12-5, at the 13:59 mark before the Eagles began to cut into that deficit, pulling within one, 19-18 with 5:39 left in the half on an Anthony Strickland (Ypsilanti, Mich.-Dearborn Heights Robichaud) layup.
Darrell Lampley (Linden, N.J.-Linden-Lakeland C.C.) made both ends of a free throw to make it 24-22 but Western would close out the half on a dunk by Shayne Whittington to give the visitors a 26-22 lead.
Hutcheson would torch the nets for 15 first-half points as WMU was shooting 42.9 percent from the floor, making 9-of-21. Meanwhile, Eastern was making just 30.8 percent of its shot, connecting on just 8-of-26 with Lampley leading the way with seven. Western held a 17-13 edge on the boards in the first half.
The two teams traded buckets out of halftime, with Flenard Whitefield hitting for Western and De'Shonte Riley (Detroit, Mich.-Country Day-Syracuse) scoring on a monster dunk to cut the visitor's lead to four, 28-24 at the 19:25 mark.
Western would then go on a mini-run, taking a nine-point lead, 35-26, with 15:25 left on a layup by Whitfield.
After two long three by Dailey cut the Broncos' lead to three, 35-32, Riley would hit two big free throws with 9:15 left to make it a two-point game, 37-35.
The teams continued to trade buckets over the next few minutes before Sims came up with a steal, followed by a layup and a foul shot on the play to cut the deficit to one, 46-45, with 3:12 left.
Sims would come up with a huge three with 57.9 seconds left to tie the game at 50-all, setting up the overtime session,.
The Eagles will stay at home in MAC West Division play Saturday, Jan. 21, when they host the University of Toledo in a 2 p.m. game in the Convocation Center.
Bowling Green 65, Miami 57
Oxford, Ohio – Jordon Crawford scored a career-high 25 points and Scott Thomas had a remarkably versatile performance as the Bowling Green State University men’s basketball team won a Mid-American Conference road game at Miami 65-57 Wednesday.
The Falcons overcame a four-point halftime deficit to win at Miami’s Millett Hall for the first time in eight attempts, dating back to a 65-50 win on Feb. 20, 2002. Bowling Green shot 56 percent in the second half as four Falcons scored in double-figures.
Crawford’s 25 points came on 10-of-13 shooting and the diminutive point guard added four assists, his 11th consecutive game with at least three. Thomas tied a program record with eight steals to go with a double-double effort of 11 points and 11 rebounds. He also had a team-high five assists and a blocked shot. Trent Jackson was the last BGSU player to post eight steals in a game, doing so against Wilmington on Dec. 21, 2000.
Along with those two, A’uston Calhoun had 13 points and six rebounds, while Dee Brown chipped in 10 points, including 4-of-4 free-throws in the final 42 seconds to ice the win. Cam Black, who played just four minutes in the team’s last game before leaving with an injury, played 25 minutes off the bench and tied his career-high with three blocked shots.
Bowling Green used a 17-2 run midway through the second half to pull away from a close contest. Miami got a Josh Sewell tip-in to take a 40-38 lead with 13:12 left and the Falcons held the RedHawks to just one field goal over the next eight minutes.
Thomas connected on his only three-pointer to give Bowling Green a lead it would never relinquish and Crawford scored on a jumper to make it 43-40. Calhoun then scored inside and Thomas added a jumper to give the Falcons a 47-40 lead.
After Miami’s Julian Mavunga cut the deficit back to five on an inside lay-up, Dee Brown made a jumper and the Falcons scored four consecutive points from the free-throw line to build a double-digit lead at 53-42 with 8:09 to go. Crawford’s lay-up a minute later made it 55-42 and it took two more minutes before the RedHawks’ Brian Sullivan connected on a three-pointer to end the drought.
By that point, Miami was attempting to play at a frenetic pace and, although the RedHawks did knock down two more three-pointers down the stretch, the Falcons’ lead never dwindled to less than five.
Bowling Green shot 50 percent for the game and outrebounded Miami 32-28. The Falcons also had just 11 turnovers, winning the turnover battle for the first time in conference play. Miami turned it over 16 times as Bowling Green posted 10 steals.
In the first half, there were three ties and 10 lead changes but the Falcons held a 24-23 lead on a Calhoun jumper with 1:36 left. Miami’s Quinten Rollins scored on a lay-up and Josh Sewell hit a three-pointer as the first half expired to give the RedHawks a 28-24 advantage at the break.
Miami falls to 5-11 overall and 1-3 in MAC play. Bowling Green improves to 8-9 overall and 2-2 in MAC play, moving up into a four-way tie for second in the East Division. Akron leads at 3-1, while Kent State, Ohio, and Buffalo are all 2-2. The Falcons will host Buffalo Saturday at 4 p.m. to close out the first trip through the division.
Toledo 71, Northern Illinois 41
TOLEDO, Ohio – With a 19-3 run to close the first half, Toledo bettered Northern Illinois, 71-41, on Wednesday night at Savage Arena. Freshman guard Stian Berg (Baerum, Norway/Norges Toppidretts Gymnas) and freshman forward Keith Gray (Chicago, Ill./Brooks Academy) each led the Huskies with eight points.
“It’s unfortunate, we just weren’t sharp today,” said NIU head coach Mark Montgomery. “I thought we played 13 good minutes, until it was 21-15, we made one more shot and then we went on a cold spell and we didn’t get stops. There aren’t many bright spots looking at the stats and after that 13 minute mark our energy and effort just wasn’t there.”
NIU shot just 30.2 percent (13-of-43) in the contest. Toledo shot 53.2 percent (25-of-47) from the field. Toledo also out-rebounded the Huskies, 32-27, marking the first time NIU has been out-rebounded in eight games.
Curtis Dennis led Toledo with 18 points. Reese Holliday added 11 and Rian Pearson had eight points and a game-high nine rebounds.
Neither team led by more than three in the first 10 minutes of the contest until a Toledo triple gave the Rockets a 15-11 lead midway through the first half. The trifecta was part of an 8-2 Toledo burst that gave the Rockets an 18-13 lead with 8:32 to play in the first half.
A basket by Berg cut the Toledo lead to three, but the Rockets answered with a 19-3 run to end the first half, taking a 37-18 lead into the intermission.
Toledo shot 59.1 percent (13-of-22) in the opening 20 minutes while holding NIU to just 33.3 percent shooting (8-of-24). Dominique Buckley led all scorers with eight points in the first half.
In the second half the Huskies earned 20 trips to the free-throw line, but were only able to convert on 11 of those chances. Keith Gray scored all eight of his points in the second half, including a pair of old-fashioned three-point plays.
The Huskies return home to the NIU Convocation Center on Saturday, Jan. 21, when they welcome Ball State to DeKalb. Game time against the Cardinals is scheduled for 7 p.m. Saturday is also NIU’s annual Alumni Day celebration with the Alumni Game taking place at 4:30 p.m.