Courtesy of MAC Athletic Communications Departments
Central Michigan 82, Bowling Green 79
Buffalo 84, Eastern Michigan 83
Ball State 79, Ohio 63
Northern Illinois 68, Miami 66
Western Michigan 78, Toledo 72
Akron 77, Kent State 51
MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. – Central Michigan closed the second half on a 12-1 run, extended the run to 17-1 to take the lead in overtime and held off a late rally to remain perfect in Mid-American Conference play with a thrilling victory over MAC East leader Bowling Green Saturday, 82-79.
The Chippewas (9-8, 5-0 MAC) trailed by 11 with 3:01 to play, 69-58, but forced the Falcons (14-3, 4-1 MAC) into five turnovers during the 12-1 run to tie the game and send it to overtime.
A steal by junior Jessica Green and pair of free throws started the run before another steal by junior Crystal Bradford led to a layup by sophomore Da'Jourie Turner. CMU forced Jillian Halfhill into a turnover in the backcourt as the ball deflected off her out of bounds and Turner was fouled on the ensuing possession. Turner hit both free throws, allowing the Chippewas to once again set up their full-court press.
The Falcons were unable to get the ball inbounded and were forced into a five-second violation, giving the ball back to CMU down five, 69-64, with 1:52 to play. Green then pulled off a little trickery on the inbounds play, throwing the ball off Alexis Rogers’ back and laid it in with 1:50 to go to pull CMU within three, 69-66.
A block by Bradford on Deborah Hoekstra led to a fastbreak layup by Turner to pull CMU within a point, 69-68, and after Rogers split a pair of free throws at the line to put BGSU up two, 70-68, the Chippewas nearly won it in regulation.
Turner missed a contested layup on the Chippewas’ next possession, but Bradford pulled down an offensive rebound and kicked it out to DiGuilio for a wide open three. The ball rattled in and out of the basket, but Green was there for another offensive board and laid it in to tie the game, 70-70.
Jasmine Matthews drew a foul on a drive to the basket, but missed both free throws. Turner again drove to the basket, but her contested layup didn’t fall and the game went to overtime as Matthews was unable to get up a shot with the ball in her hands before regulation ended.
CMU opened up the overtime period by extending its' run to 17-1, scoring the first five points on a mid-range jumper by Green, layup by redshirt freshman Jewel Cotton and free throw by Bradford to take a 75-70 lead with 3:18 to play.
Halfhill hit a step back three to pull BGSU within two, 75-73, and Jill Stein scored down low to tie the game at the 2:38 mark. Stein drew a foul on Bradford on the bucket, but was unable to convert the three-point play.
Green and Miriam Justinger traded buckets to even the game at 77-77, but it was a pair of free throws by senior Niki DiGuilio with 57 seconds left that gave CMU the lead for good. Turner also hit a pair of freebies with 14 seconds left to extend the lead to four, but BGSU wasn’t quite done.
Rachel Konieczki, who entered the game after Halfhill was called for her fifth foul, hit a runner in the lane to pull BGSU within two, 81-79. Turner split a pair at the other end, giving BGSU a chance to tie the game, but Green came up with a steal on the Falcons’ inbound pass to secure the victory.
The Chippewas struggled to hang on to the ball in the first half, committing 14 turnovers while shooting just 34.5 percent (10-for-29) from the field. Bowling Green held an eight-point advantage at the break, 32-24.
Senior Taylor Johnson scored her 1,000th career point on a three-point field goal with 9:23 to play to cut the Chippewas’ deficit to four, 48-44, and CMU was down just three, 53-50 on another bucket by the senior with 7:19 to play.
Bowling Green reeled off 15-3 run over the net 3:36 of play however to build its’ lead back to double digits, forcing CMU to make the dramatic comeback.
Green scored a game-high 23 points to lead five CMU players in double figures, while Turner matched her career high with all 14 of her points coming in the second half and overtime.
Bradford filled the stat sheet for CMU, scoring 13 points and pulling down 15 rebounds for her sixth-straight double-double, while also finishing with eight steals, a program-record seven blocks and five assists.
Johnson scored 12 points on 5-of-7 shooting and DiGuilio had three triples to score 11.
CMU committed just four turnovers in the second half and overtime, while forcing the Falcons into 27 turnovers, including 15 in the second half and overtime.
The Chippewas will look to remain perfect in conference play when they head to Kent State next Wednesday, January 22.
BUFFALO, NY - It was a rollercoaster of emotions for the women's basketball team Saturday afternoon, who yielded a big lead to the visiting Eagles of Eastern Michigan (12-4, 2-3 MAC) late in the second half but would storm off victorious on a game-winning jumper from Mackenzie Loesing with 2.5 seconds left in overtime to seal an 84-83 win. Loesing finished with 26 points, and Christa Baccas matched career highs in points (18) and rebounds (15) for Buffalo (9-7, 2-3 MAC).
The Eagles erased a 19-point advantage for UB with 10 minutes to go to force overtime, and led 75-73 with 3:35 in the extra period. Margeaux Gupilan would hit a miraculous bank-shot three from the corner to put the Bulls ahead, but again it would trail, this time 81-80, after a pair of made free throws by EMU.
A Kristen Sharkey jumper on one end was then answered by two more made free throws with just 15 seconds left to put the visitors up 83-82. Loesing took the ball at the right side and drove in but passed up a contested layup and would instead sweep across the baseline. She then turned with a jumper that rolled in for the lead with just 2.5 seconds to play.
"I knew that our team needed me to take the ball to the hole, and in that last possession I saw the opportunity and I took it," said Loesing, who finished with 26 points for her sixth game with over 20 points this season.
In the overtime period alone, there were four ties and six lead changes.
The game started on a much slower pace, with the Bulls only up 22-20 with 4:44 left in the opening half. A shooting slump from the Eagles coupled with a solid half of rebounding for UB would trigger an 18-3 run that boosted the team to a 40-28 lead at halftime.
Coming out of the break, the Eagles would strike from deep to pull the game close again thanks to an 11-1 run just three minutes in. After a well-timed timeout for the Bulls, the offense woke up again, just as it had to close out the first half, and went on a 19-2 run from the timeout to the 10:02 mark to build what would be its biggest lead of the day. A gutty comeback from EMU would ultimately tie the game back up with 4.5 seconds in regulation to set up the dramatic overtime.
The win was the team's second straight in Mid-American Conference play, and the first overtime win since beating Oakland in December of 2011. It snapped a seven-game overtime losing streak to MAC opponents that dates back to 2003.
"What we discovered today was two teams that did not want to walk away losing, but at the end of the day we played inspired basketball as a unit," head coach Felisha Legette-Jack said.
Baccas was a force to be reckoned with all afternoon, nearly posting a double-double by halftime. She would have to wait until early in the second half to clinch her third straight double-double, and finished with three blocks and four steals to go with her career highs in points and rebounds. Also quietly dominating down low was Sharkey, who scored 17 points with 14 rebounds as she and Baccas combined to hit 14-22 attempts in the game.
The team ends the home stand with a 2-1 record, and will now head back West for next week's MAC schedule. The team faces Northern Illinois on Thursday before a Sunday matchup against Ball State. Tip off in DeKalb is set for 7 pm.
ATHENS, Ohio -- The Ohio University women's basketball team (8-8, 3-2 MAC) fell to Ball State University (8-8, 3-2 MAC), 79-63, in a Mid-American Conference matchup at the Convocation Center on Saturday (Jan. 18).
The loss snapped a three-game winning streak for the Bobcats and marked Ohio's first home loss of the 2013-14 season.
The Cardinals started the game off red-hot, connecting on their first six shots from the floor to open up a 12-7 advantage in the opening five minutes. Ball State built their lead up to 30-13 with 9:29 remaining in the first half.
The `Cats sparked a 10-0 run late in the half to cut the Cardinals' lead to nine at 37-28, but Ball State answered with a 5-0 run of their own to enter intermission with a 42-28 advantage.
Ohio opened the second half on a 5-0 spurt by way of a pair of free throws by freshman guard Quiera Lampkins (Gahanna, Ohio) and a sophomore guard Kiyanna Black (Columbus, Ohio) trey to come within nine points at 42-33.
That's as close as the Bobcats got, though, as Ball State expanded its lead to a game-high 19 points at 11:34 when they led 61-42.
Black led the charge for the Green and White with 23 points to go along with three assists and two steals. Lampkins dished in 19 points, marking the third time she's posted 19 points or more in Ohio's last four games.
Ohio looks to return to its winning ways when it visits the University of Akron next Thursday (Jan. 23) in a MAC East Division clash. The opening tip is scheduled for 7 p.m. ET.
OXFORD, Ohio – The Miami University women’s basketball team nearly made a last-second comeback, but Northern Illinois hung on to take a 69-66 victory on Saturday. The RedHawks fall to 5-11 overall and 1-4 in the Mid-American Conference. The Huskies improve to 7-8 overall and 3-2 in the MAC.
Trailing 67-61 with less than 10 seconds remaining, senior guard Hannah Robertson forced NIU to throw the ball away on a long pass. Senior guard Haley Robertson was fouled on her subsequent jump shot. She hit both to cut the deficit to four with six seconds to go. Miami fouled immediately to extend the game. The Huskies converted 1-for-2 from the line to make it 68-63 with 4.7 seconds remaining.
After a timeout, the RedHawks ran a perfect inbounds to play to Hannah Robertson, who drained a corner three-pointer with 0.7 seconds to go. On the subsequent inbounds play Haley Robertson collided with Ally Lehman of the Huskies as the referees called a foul. A video review was needed to determine who the foul was on. Unfortunately for the RedHawks it was determined to be on Haley Robertson, which allowed NIU to finish off a 69-66 win.
Hannah Robertson led Miami with 16 points. Freshman forward Nicole Anderson was also in double-figures for the ‘Hawks, finishing with 11. Sophomore forward Hannah McCue had a strong game off the bench with nine points. The team finished 8-for-18 (44.4 percent) from behind the arc, and was an impressive 24-for-30 (80.0 percent).
Unlike the RedHawks’ back-and-forth game against Akron on Wednesday, the first half was played at a much more deliberate pace, with each team trying to execute its half-court offense. Hannah Robertson drained a couple of jumpers, while Anderson and sophomore forward Jessica Rupright hit back-to-back three pointers to give Miami a 12-4 lead five minutes into the contest. NIU was able to score the next six points to pull within two, but a 9-2 run keyed by a three-pointer from Anderson gave Miami a 21-12 lead with 6:58 remaining in the period.
Northern Illinois again cut the lead down to four, but three-pointers from sophomore guard Maddie McCallie and McCue sparked a 12-6 run that gave the ‘Hawks their largest lead of the contest at 34-24. Amanda Corral drained a three-pointer of her own with five seconds to go to send the Huskies into the break trailing by seven at 34-27.
Anderson led the ‘Hawks with nine points in the first half, while Hannah Robertson and McCue each had seven. Miami shot 9-for-24 (37.5 percent) during the period, while NIU shot 10-for-27 (37.0 percent).
Despite a three-pointer from Hannah Robertson and a jumper by junior guard Courtney Larson, the Huskies opened the second half on a 13-5 run to take their first lead of the game at 40-39 with 13:42 to go. Freshman guard Jillian Spurlock got the lead right back for the RedHawks with a jumper on the next possession. The lead changed a total of five times before a pair of free throws from junior guard Kindsay Brandt gave Miami a 47-45 lead with 11:09 to go.
NIU answered with a 15-6 run over the next five minutes to take a 60-53 advantage, its largest of the game. Miami did not give up as a pair of free throws from senior center Kelsey Simon, along with a three-pointer by Haley Robertson made it 60-58 with 4:42 to go.
The teams traded free throws over the next few possessions until one by Hannah Robertson made it 63-61 at the 1:09 mark. On the next possession, Miami forced NIU to use all of the shot clock, but Jenna Thorp was able to hit a key three-pointer with 39 seconds to go. A free throw nine seconds later made it 67-61 NIU before the RedHawks nearly pulled off the comeback.
Miami finished the game shooting 17-for-48 (35.4 percent), while the Huskies were 23-for-57 (40.4 percent). Hannah Robertson led the ‘Hawks with seven rebounds, while Larson and Haley Robertson each had three assists. Northern Illinois finished with a slight, 37-35, rebounding advantage.
The RedHawks return to the road next Wednesday when they travel to Western Michigan for a 7 p.m. game. Tim Bray has the call and it can be heard live on Miami All-Access for those who have a subscription.
KALAMAZOO, Mich.- Five players scored in double figures for Western Michigan as the Broncos used an even attack to dispose of four-time defending MAC West champion Toledo, 78-72.
Sophomore point guard Alex Morton was aggressive going to the basket and totaled a career-high 17 points. Marquisha Harris and Miracle Woods combined for 32 points in the post, each scoring 16 points apiece. Harris also led the team with nine rebounds and dished out a career-high five assists. Woods pulled down seven rebounds.
A.J. Johnson and Michelle O'Brien were the other two Broncos to reach double figures. Both did the bulk of their scoring in the first half, as Johnson totaled nine of her 11 and O'Brien had eight of her 10 in the first 20 minutes of the game.
Western Michigan led by nine at halftime, 38-29, and had to hold off Toledo's best effort in the second half, in which UT shot 56.7 percent from the field. The lead changed eight times in the final period and was tied on four other occasions.
WMU however was red hot from the floor as well, shooting 50.8 percent for the game. Western Michigan also did a good job taking care of the ball, committing a season-low 11 turnovers, with only four in the second half when the game was on the line.
While it was the guards getting the job done in the first half, Harris and Woods went to work in the second, where they each totaled 13 points. With Woods on the bench with foul trouble, Harris repeatedly stepped up to hit shots to ward off the Rockets.
As the momentum started to swing Toledo's way late, Harris grabbed an offensive board off of a miss by Morton and was fouled on the putback, rallying her team and the Bronco fans. Woods returned to the floor shortly after and scored Western Michigan's final eight points of the game.
Western Michigan has now beaten Toledo in two of the last three contests in Kalamazoo. The win snapped a two-game skid for the Broncos (7-9, 3-2 MAC), who had lost their last two conference outings after opening the MAC schedule with a pair of wins.
Andola Dortch scored a game-high 19 points for the Rockets (7-9, 3-2 MAC), and had five assists and four rebounds. Brianna Jones (16 points, 13 rebounds) totaled a double-double and two other Rocket players scored in double figures.
Western Michigan hosts Miami on Wednesday at 7 p.m. and concludes a three-game homestand against rival Central Michigan on Saturday at 2 p.m. The Broncos defeated Miami earlier this month in Oxford, 88-78.
AKRON, Ohio -- Rachel Tecca posted her fourth double-double of the season, leading four players with double figures for Akron as the Zips sailed to a 77-51 victory over Kent State Saturday afternoon at James A. Rhodes Arena.
UA snapped a three-game skid with the win, evening its record to 8-8 overall and 2-3 in the Mid-American Conference. Kent State dropped to 3-13 on the season and 0-5 in the league.
The victory also gives Akron a half-point in the PNC Wagon Wheel Challenge standings, and makes UA's 2013-14 senior class the all-time winningest class in the history of the program.
Tecca poured in a game-high 24 points, 14 of which came from the free throw line, and pulled down 12 rebounds.
Hanna Luburgh dropped 16 points for the day, including a pair of 3-pointers to start the game. Hannah Plybon and Anita Brown added 11 apiece.
Kent State's offense was led by Rachel Mendelsohn with 14 points off the bench.
Akron's zone defense tripped up the Golden Flashes and forced them into 27 turnovers, which the Zips converted into 28 points on the other end. UA also out-rebounded KSU, 39-34.
The Zips grew an early six-point lead just three minutes into the contest after Kacie Cassell found Tecca in transition for a layup to put Akron up 12-6. Kent State's Mendelsohn put in a driving layup to cap five-straight points for KSU and make it a one-point game at the 12:59 mark, but Akron's defense would answer.
UA held Kent State scoreless for the next 5:50 and without a field goal for over a minute longer than that, as the Zips methodically built a 15-point cushion with the score at 27-12 and just over seven minutes to go in the first half. Tecca scored eight-straight points during the span, and DiAndra Gibson, making her first career start, knocked down a trey to keep the run alive.
Akron took a 36-19 lead into the locker room, thanks to its defensive effort that held Kent State to just 25.0 percent shooting from the field in the first half.
The Zips picked up where they left off after the break, connecting on 13-of-26 attempts from the field in the second period (50.0 percent) and missing the mark on just two free throws. Three of Kent State's starters fouled out of the game and Akron capitalized on its trips to the line in the second half. As a team, Akron was 25-for-30 (83.3 percent) from the charity stripe for the game.
UA returns to the court on Thursday, Jan. 23, when it plays host to MAC East Division opponent Ohio. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m. at the JAR.