Friday's MAC Men's Basketball Results

Updated 11/17/2012

Friday's MAC Men's Basketball Results
Akron 82, UNC-Asheville 62
Western Michigan 81, Loyola (Ill.) 71
Western Illinois 67, Buffalo 58
Ohio 85, UNC Wilmington 47
Ball State 66, Wofford 61
Central Michigan 76, Olivet 62
Eastern Michigan 60, Eastern Illinois 52
Kent State 92, Chicago State 63

Stories courtesy of MAC Sports Information Departments
Akron 82, UNC-Asheville 62
BAYAMON, P.R. – Chauncey Gilliam bounced back from a rough first game in Puerto Rico, scoring a game-high tying 22 points to lead the Akron Zips to an 82-63 win over UNC Asheville on Saturday at the 2012 Puerto Rico Tip-Off.
Gilliam connected on 7-of-9 shots from the field, including a 5-of-6 performance from behind the 3-point arc. He also had one steal and one assist. Alex Abreu added 12 points and nine assists, while Nick Harney, making his season debut, had 10 points and two boards.
The Zips (2-2) shot 49.1 percent for the game (26-of-53) and 50.0 percent from long range (12-of-24). The Bulldogs finished the game shooting 47/7 percent (21-of-44) and hit just three 3-point buckets (3-of-5).
UA won the rebound 30-29 and forced 14 UNCA turnovers. The Zips finished with 17 assists to just 12 turnovers.
Keith Hornsby led UNC Asheville (1-3) with 22 points.
Akron opened the second half by scoring the first two buckets to take a 42-34 advantage just 1:16 into the period. Gilliam began to take the game over just inside 17:00 remaining in the game, scoring 11-straight points to help the Zips maintain a 10-point advantage (55-45).
Akron would see its advantage grow to 67-50 at the 8:20 mark. That lead would continue to climb, reaching 24 points (76-52) by the under-four minute timeout. The Zips would cruise to the finish for the victory.
The Zips opened an early 6-2 lead sparked by Demetrius "Tree" Treadwell, who scored on his first two touches after getting the start. The Akron advantage hovered around five points for a stretch before the Bulldogs closed to within one point, 20-19, at the 9:10 mark.
From there, Akron used a 16-7 run to open up a 10-point advantage (36-26) with 5:04 remaining in the half. The Zips used three 3-pointers and seven free throws to spark the run.
UNC Asheville would answer, closing the half on an 8-1 run over the final 4:50 to send the game into halftime with Akron leading 37-34.
Both teams shot the ball well in the first half, with the Zips connecting on 11-of-25 from the floor (44 percent) and the Bulldogs hitting 12-of-26 attempts (46 percent).
Abreu led all scorers with 12 points and four assists while Harney and Gilliam pitched in with six points each. Zeke Marshall led all players with five boards in the half.

Akron will take on the winner of the Penn State-Providence matchup on Sunday at 1:30 p.m. ET on ESPNU.

Western Michigan 81, Loyola (Ill.) 71
TAMPA, Fla. - Nate Hutcheson notched a career-high 30 points, three other players broke double-digits in scoring, and the Western Michigan men's basketball team used a second-half run to pull away from the Loyola-Chicago Ramblers, defeating them 81-71 at the USF Invitational on Friday. The win improves the Broncos' record to 2-1; they will face Maryland-Eastern Shore on Saturday.
Hutcheson shot 8 of 13 from the field against the Ramblers, including a 6 of 8 performance from beyond the three-point arc, and led the Broncos with a career-high 30-point effort, and also threw in nine rebounds. Darius Paul recorded 14 points, six rebounds, and five assists, and Austin Richie scored 13 points, including a clutch 3 of 4 performance from the free throw line down the stretch. Brandon Pokley hit a pair of free throws in the final 30 seconds to reach 10 points for the game, his second straight double-digit scoring night.
The Broncos and Ramblers battled well into the second half, with Loyola taking a 55-54 lead with 9:27 remaining in the second half. The Broncos called a timeout to get themselves situated, and the adjustments made at the break turned out to be the catalyst to breaking the game open. Richie drained a three-pointer to give the Broncos a 57-55 lead, and Paul would thread a slick pass to Shayne Whittington at the 7:51 mark to give the Broncos a 59-55 advantage. Whittington completed a 9-1 run when he took another inlet pass, this one from Richie, and converted it to make it 63-57 and force a Loyola timeout.
The Ramblers pulled to within three points at the 6:00 mark when Ben Averkamp completed a three-point play with a lay-up and free throw, but Hutcheson drained a three-pointer at the 5:01 mark to make it 67-60, and would hit another at 4:23 to make it 70-60. The Broncos kept the Ramblers at arm's length for the remainder of the half, with Paul giving the Broncos an 11-point lead with a reverse one-handed dunk under the hoop to make it 76-65. Pokley gave the Broncos their largest lead of the night when he made a pair of free throws with 28 seconds remaining to make it 81-68, and the Ramblers made a pair of meaningless baskets at the end to cut the final deficit to 11 points.
The first half was a great back-and-forth battle, with the Broncos taking an early lead on Hutcheson's three-pointer at the 18:23 mark. The Broncos led the first half nearly beginning to end, but Loyola took a 28-27 lead with 5:49 remaining in the4 half. Hutcheson quickly got the lead back with a three-pointer, and Connar Tava would convert a no-look pass from Paul into a lay-up at the 4:36 mark, giving the Broncos a 33-28 lead. The largest lead of the half came at the 3:24 mark, when Paul drove to the hoop and laid the ball in to make it 38-31.

Western Illinois 67, Buffalo 58

EVANSVILLE, IN - After a spirited first half that featured five ties and ten lead changes, the Buffalo men's basketball team fell victim to a cold shooting hand in a 67-58 loss to Western Illinois. Will Regan and Javon McCrea each had 13 points, but the Bulls shot only 39 percent in the game overall.

The first half was as even as the team has had all season, with the Fighting Leathernecks using outside shooting to earn a 32-31 halftime lead, hitting 5-8 threes. Buffalo was able to keep pace thanks to an efficient low-post offense that Regan spearheaded. Working the high-low game with McCrea, Regan hit five of seven shots - mostly layups - and scored 11 points in just 12 minutes of action. McCrea assisted on three of the makes, and also had eight points and two blocks in the opening half.
As the closing seconds of the half counted down, though, the Bulls suffered what would be a major injury. Senior guard Tony Watson went up for a three pointer and landed on his opponent's foot, twisting his ankle and forcing him to miss the rest of the game.
That injury would come back to haunt the Bulls, as the Leathernecks packed the paint in the second half and forced UB into a perimeter-oriented offense. While the team did hit four of five three pointers in the final 20 minutes, it went an uncharacteristic 4-19 on two-point field goals and was outrebounded 20-15 by Western Illinois.
"In the first half we didn't dig in defensively and get stops," head coach Reggie Witherspoon said. "In the second half we dried up offensively. They packed into the lane and we had some open shots that we didn't take. When our offense is missing shots, we need to be sure that we're still rebounding the ball well and we didn't do that in the second half." 
The team, which came into the night averaging 21 turnovers per game, committed only 10 but forced only eight turnovers against a Leatherneck team that had 19 in the previous game.
Jarod Oldham was the team's only other player in double figures for scoring, hitting a pair of threes en route to 11 points. Western Illinois had an even offense, with six players scoring eight points or more and sixth-year senior Ceola Clark scoring a game-high 20.
Buffalo's marathon week will come to an end tomorrow, with a 6 pm tip off against Yale.
Ohio 85, UNC Wilmington 47
ATHENS, Ohio - Senior Ivo Baltic scored a game-high 20 points to lead the Ohio University men's basketball team (2-0) to an 85-47 victory over UNC-Wilmington Friday night at the Convocation Center.
The Bobcats' win over the Seahawks marked Ohio's 11th-consecutive win at home dating back to last season.
Baltic (Kansas City, Mo.) was one four players that finished in double figures. Senior Reggie Keely (University Heights, Ohio) came off the bench and finished the night with 14 points on 6-of-8 shooting. Senior Walter Offutt (Indianapolis, Ind.) and junior Nick Kellogg(Westerville, Ohio) finished with 11 and 10 points, respectively.
Senior D.J. Cooper (Chicago, Ill.) posted a game-high 14 assists, finishing just one helper shy of his single-game career-high. As a team, Ohio forced UNCW in to 26 turnovers and held a 35-23 advantage on the boards.
Ohio jumped out to a 13-point lead in the first three minutes of the game, forcing the Seahawks in to five turnovers during the stretch. Offutt scored six points during the 'Cats early run as Ohio never looked back, posting a wire to wire victory.
The Seahawks, who had not faced the Bobcats since the 1988-89 season surrendered 21 points off of turnovers in the first half and were held to just 14.3 percent shooting in the first half. UNCW did cut the Bobcats' lead to nine (20-11) with 10:50 to go in the first half, but that would be as close as the Seahawks would get for the remainder of the game.
Ohio held UNCW to just six points for the remainder of the first half and built a 20-point lead heading into the locker room. Ohio came out of the locker room firing once again as it opened the second half with an 8-2 run to put the game out of reach.
The Bobcats return to action on Sunday as it faces off against Wofford. Tipoff is set for 2 p.m. Sunday afternoon's matchup can be seen through a live stream and can be heard for free on "Voice of the Bobcats" Russ Eisenstein will call the action live on the People's Bank Ohio IMG Sports Network.

Ball State 66, Wofford 61

MUNCIE, Ind. -- Freshman guard Michael Ramey keyed a game-changing run with a trio of 3-pointers in less than 90 seconds Friday night, and the Ball State men's basketball team held off Wofford for a 66-61 win at Worthen Arena.

Ramey finished with 11 points in his second collegiate game, while junior Majok Majok scored a game-high 17 to lead four Cardinals in double figures. Jauwan Scaife tallied 14 points and Jesse Berry added 12 for Ball State (2-0).
The Cardinals trailed 45-39 with just more than nine minutes to play when Ramey struck for the first time from beyond the arc to start a 13-2 spurt. Ramey also hit 3-pointers on the next two possessions, and then Berry and Majok added free throws on the next two trips to put Ball State on top 52-47.
Wofford (1-2) trimmed the Cardinals' lead to two points on three occasions in the closing minutes, but the Terriers could get no closer. Ball State scored 10 of its final 12 points at the free throw line over the last four minutes to close out the win.
Ball State's defensive effort limited Wofford's leading scorer, Karl Cochran, to 10 points on 4-of-15 shooting. Cochran entered the game having scored more than 20 in each of Wofford's first two contests. The Cardinals held the Terriers to 36 percent shooting for the game and turned them over 17 times.
"We knew Wofford was going to be a really well-prepared, very disciplined, tough-minded basketball team," Ball State head coach Billy Taylor said. "They make you play long possessions on defense. The fact that we forced 17 turnovers is really a credit to our defense because their execution is usually top notch. I thought we did a terrific job on the defensive end of the floor."
Majok played aggressively in the paint on the offensive end, earning 10 free throws on the night and knocking down nine of them. The junior college transfer reached double figures for the second straight game to start his Ball State career and also finished with a team-high seven rebounds.
Chris Bond's sticky defense was again a major factor for Ball State as the junior forward finished with five steals to go along with seven points and six rebounds.
The Cardinals picked up their shooting over the second half. After hitting on 35 percent of their shots in the first half, they knocked down 53 percent over the final 20 minutes and also went 21-for-25 at the foul line after the break.
Lee Skinner led Wofford with a double-double of 16 points and 10 rebounds. Spencer Collins added 14 points for a Terrier team that has played in three straight postseasons with two NCAA tournament berths and a trip to the College Basketball Invitational (CBI).
Friday's game was the 300th for Ball State in Worthen Arena, which opened in January 1992. The Cardinals are now 219-81 all-time in the building.
Ball State will play its third consecutive home game Tuesday when it welcomes in-state rival Indiana State to Worthen Arena. That game is scheduled for a 7 p.m. tipoff.

Central Michigan 77, Olivet 62

MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. - Zach Saylor scored a career-high 14 points to lead four Central Michigan players in double-figures as the Chippewas overcame an early cold spell to give first-year head coach Keno Davis his first CMU victory, 76-62, over Olivet.

The Chippewas (1-1) began the home opener without a field goal for four minutes and found themselves down 9-0 early, but responded to the tune of a 32-2 run, at one point holding the Comets (0-1) without a point for 6:40. The Comets managed a layup and three-pointer by Garner Small just after the four-minute media time-out but the Chippewas wrapped up the last two minutes of the half with a 10-2 run, taking a 44-20 lead into the locker room.
Central shot 45 percent from the floor before the break and hit 57 percent after snapping its nine-point deficit at the start. Olivet, meanwhile, was held to 9-of-28 shooting and was forced into 15 turnovers.
The Comets slowly chipped away their deficit throughout the second half, actually out-scoring the Chippewas by 10, but Central never gave up its double-digit lead.
"Olivet is extremely well-coached and did some things that bothered us, especially in the second half with some of their zone looks," Davis said. "It's something that will help us in the future. It's always better to be able to learn from wins than losses.
"We could have changed up what we did on defense at times, but with their strength being the three-point shot I just didn't want to all of a sudden get into a three-point contest with them. Credit them for staying at arm's length and being close to making it a game at the end."
In addition to Saylor's 14 points, 10 of which came in the second half, he led the Chippewas with six rebounds - another career best for the senior who earned his first two career starts this week.
Freshman point guard Chris Fowler added 12 points and seven assists while committing just one turnover, and senior guard Kyle Randall and freshman forward Blake Hibbitts each scored 11.
Small led all players with 20 points and 12 rebounds
The Chippewas will travel to Utah next week for the Utah Thanksgiving Tournament in Salt Lake City. Central will start the tournament with a game against Wright State Wednesday, Nov. 21, at 7 p.m. The next home date for the Chippewas is Wednesday, Nov. 28, against Bradley at 7 p.m.

Eastern Michigan 60, Eastern Illinois 52

YPSILANTI, Mich. ( – Behind a late 18-7 second half run, the Eastern Michigan University men's basketball team earned a 60-52 come from behind win over Eastern Illinois at the EMU “Ice Man” Classic here at the Convocation Center, Friday, Nov. 16.

Offensively, it was a tale of two halves as EMU opened the first half shooting a dismal 6-for-21 from the field. However, the second half was a complete turn around as the Eagles went 11-for-22 (50% clip) en-route to the victory. The Eagles also took advantage from the foul line hitting 18-for-24 free throws.
Senior Derek Thompson (Detroit, Mich.-Melvindale) led the way for EMU with a season-high 22 points while junior Daylen Harrison (Akron, Ohio-St. Vincent St. Mary) added 18 points going a perfect 11-11 from the charity stripe.
On the defensive end, Eastern turned a solid effort behind a season-high 10 bocks lead by senior Jamell Harris (Euclid, Ohio-Euclid) who tallied four blocks while junior Da'Shonte Riley (Detroit, Mich.-Detroit Country Day) and junior Glenn Bryant (Detroit, Mich.-Oak Hill Academy) had three and two respectively.
EIU was lead by junior forward Sherman Blanford who scored 14 points and grabbed a team-high nine rebounds while sophomore forward Josh Piper added 13 and six boards.
EIU used a 10-5 second half run to pull ahead, 43-35, before EMU answered with a 5-0 run of its own to pull within three points, 43-40, with 7:50 remaining. Eastern's offense continued to heat up outscoring the Panthers 14-5 over the next four minutes to take a 54-48 lead.
The first half proved to be a defensive struggle as both teams shot a combined 16-for-51 from the field. Midway through the period EMU held a slim 12-11 lead before EIU outscored the Eagles 15-11 down the stretch taking a 26-23 lead into the locker room. EMU finished the half with six blocks while holding the Panthers to 3-for-13 from behind the arc. The Eagles also took advantage from the charity stripe going 8-of-10.
The Eagles continue play in the Iceman Classic against IPFW on Saturday, Nov. 17 at 7 p.m. Prior to the contest, Texas-Pan American and Eastern Illinois will square off at 4:30 p.m.
Kent State 92, Chicago State 63
KENT, Ohio - Chris Evans stuffed another stat sheet and Devareaux Manley caught fire from long distance as Kent State cruised to a 92-63 win over Chicago State at the M.A.C. Center in Friday night's opener of the Joe Cipriano Nebraska Classic.
The bounce-back win following a frustrating loss to Temple three days earlier improved the Golden Flashes' record to 2-1 on the season. It also offered a positive sign that this year's young roster can learn quickly from its mistakes and find success with some swift adjustments.
Kent State cut down on its turnovers, committing just six against a Chicago State defense that had been forcing an average of 27.5 in its first two games of the season. 
"For us to have six turnovers coming off of Temple when we had 21, that's a great job," said Kent State head coach Rob Senderoff. "That's something we emphasized as being very important. And we forced 20 turnovers. I think that's the way our defense will be … when we are scrambling and flying around."
Evans trimmed his turnover total from eight against Temple to just one against the Chicago State on a night when he also totaled 14 points, eight rebounds, four assists, four steals and a blocked shot in just 22 minutes of work.
Manley led the Golden Flashes with a career-high 20 points on a night when just about everything he fired at the rim found the bottom of the net. The sophomore put on a second half show, hitting 5-of-7 three-point attempts after the break. 
After going scoreless in Kent State's first two games while going 0-for-5 from the field and 0-for-4 from the arc, Manley admitted taking to heart questions from his coaches and teammates who wondered, "how often are you getting in the gym and putting up shots?"
"The first couple of games I didn't shoot the way I'm supposed to," said Manley, who finished his night shooting 7-for-10 from the field and 6-of-8 from three. "It was finally good to hit that first one as soon as I came in off the bench. It felt like it was going to be a good night for me, so I kept being patient."
The Golden Flashes were patient the entire second half, working for three-pointers on drive-and-kick and other inside-out actions instead of settling for long jumpers off the dribble.  After taking a 42-32 lead into the break, Kent State broke the game open by connecting on a combined nine of 16 from three-point range in the final 20 minutes.
Senderoff was impressed by the shot selection in the second half, and in particular with the performance of Manley.
"I'm happy for Dev," said Senderoff. "It's funny because he shot the ball really well in practice and he's worked hard, but he was really, really struggling in games early on. I had a short leash with him …  When a player is not happy with his playing time, and I'm sure he wasn't, that's how you are supposed to respond. That says, 'you know what coach? You have to play me."
Randal Holt (15 points), Mark Henniger (11 points) and Bryson Pope (10 points) also scored in double figures for Kent State. 
Henniger converted five of his six shots while establishing a new career high in scoring He also added four rebounds and a blocked shot during an active 21 minutes in the post.
"It was a great game from Mark," said Senderoff. "I would hope his confidence level is at an all-time high. He is playing well. And he played against a good player. Jeremy Robinson is a very good player, and Mark held his own versus him."
Robinson and Matt Ross led the Cougars with 14 points each.
Twelve of the 14 players who saw action for Kent State reached the scoring column as the Golden Flashes' bench recorded a season-high 46 points. 
Kent State is back in action on Sunday at 2 p.m. when Valparaiso visits the M.A.C. Center in the second of four games in the Joe Cipriano Nebraska Classic.