Friday's MAC Men's Basketball Results
Central Michigan 127, Marygrove 44
Ball State 94, Oakland City 58
Northern Illinois 65, Bethune-Cookman 51
Stories courtesy of MAC Sports Information Departments
Central Michigan 127, Marygrove 44
MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. – Central Michigan started the 2014 calendar year and finished its non-conference schedule on an extreme high note on Friday night in McGuirk Arena, setting a program record for margin of victory in a 127-44 dismantling of Marygrove. CMU also equaled its non-conference win total from a year ago, recording its seventh.
The 83-point margin of victory easily topped the previous high of 71, set in a 107-36 win over Hillsdale on February 28, 1963. The Chippewas also tied the program record for most points in a game, also totaling 127 in a victory over Oakland on December 3, 1987.
Braylon Rayson led six Chippewas in double figures, scoring a career-high 27 points. The freshman guard made 11-of-16 shots, including four three-pointers. Austin Stewart (14), Spencer Krannitz (13) and Rayshawn Simmons (10) also established personal offensive bests. In total, 12 CMU players scored at least three points, with eight notching nine or more.
CMU outrebounded Marygrove, 45-29, including a 31-15 advantage on the defensive boards. Senior guard/forward DeAndray Buckley had a game-high eight rebounds in 15 minutes of play. Every Chippewa player that saw action had at least one rebound.
Central Michigan (7-5) started fast while Marygrove was ice cold from the field early on. The Chippewas jumped out to a 7-0 lead, thanks to a three-pointer by John Simons and two buckets by Fowler, and held the Mustangs off the scoreboard for nearly the first four minutes of the game. After a series of layups by Buckley, Stewart, Zach Saylor and Simmons, CMU’s advantage ballooned to 20-5 at the 12:51 mark.
Marygrove responded with a mini 6-3 run to pull within 12 of CMU at 23-11 but that’s as close as the Mustangs would get. After a timeout, the Chippewas sprinted out to score 16 of the next 19 points and build a 39-14 lead with under 7:30 to play. CMU kept pouring it on before the break, including three three-pointers from Rayson in the final 4:57 of the half. Heading into the locker rooms, Central was in control with a 60-25 lead.
The second half told a similar story as the first. CMU continued to score at will, upping its lead by 10 points to 45, getting baskets from eight different Chippewas by the 11:38 mark. A layup by Marygrove’s Daryll Dixon with 10:34 remaining in the game made the score 87-42. From that point on, Central overwhelmed the Mustangs with a 35-2 run to end the game. Marygrove went 8:09 without a basket while CMU was getting points from a variety of sources.
Krannitz went on a personal 7-0 run late, making a free throw after a made three-pointer and then following it up with a layup and another free throw. Rayson put the finishing touches on the win, scoring on a layup with 1:09 on the clock, but missed a three-pointer in the final minute that would have broken the program's single-game scoring record.
The Central Michigan press harassed Marygrove throughout the game, earning the Chippewas 16 steals, which they converted into 34 points, while forcing 23 Mustang turnovers.
CMU dominated in the paint, scoring over 50 percent of its points there (68), mostly on layups. The Chippewas bench outscored the Mustangs’, 69-4.
Dixon led Marygrove (1-14) with 18 points while Diante Taylor added 12. The Mustangs shot just 29% from the field, making only six baskets in the second half.
CMU will begin MAC play next week when it welcomes Miami (Ohio) (4-6) to McGuirk Arena for a 7 p.m. game on Wednesday, Jan. 8.
Central Michigan men’s basketball is on Twitter. Follow head coach Keno Davis (@CoachKenoDavis) and the program’s official Twitter account (@CMUMensBBall) to get insider news and information and team updates. The Chippewas are also on Facebook at www.facebook.com/CMUMensBBall
For an insiders look at the 2013-14 Chippewas, click here to view the Central Michigan Men’s Basketball MAC Guide. Find feature stories, coach and player bios, videos and much more.
Ball State 94, Oakland City 58
MUNCIE, Ind. -- Majok Majok scored 25 points and grabbed a career-high 18 rebounds Friday as the Ball State men’s basketball team registered a 94-58 victory over Oakland City in Worthen Arena.
The win snapped a seven-game losing streak for the Cardinals, who now turn the page to the Mid-American Conference portion of their schedule. Ball State, 3-8 on the year, will host defending league champion Akron in the MAC opener Wednesday.
Oakland City, a program from Southern Indiana with dual membership in NCAA Division II and the National Christian College Athletic Association, lost for the first time in its past four games to fall to 8-4.
Ball State’s Chris Bond logged 16 points, while Mark Alstork finished with career highs of 13 points and six rebounds. Zavier Turner gutted through illness to score 12 points and hand out five assists, while Jesse Berry added 10 points to give the Cardinals five scorers in double figures.
Majok, who reached double-figure points and rebounds by halftime, finished with his second straight double-double and fifth of the season. The Cardinals were able to pound the ball inside to the senior big man, who shot 7 of 10 from the floor and made good on 11 of 12 free throw attempts.
Playing just 25 minutes, Majok finished one shy of his career-best scoring output while becoming the first Ball State player with 20 points and 15 rebounds in a game since Terrance Chapman in January 2005.
“Majok has responded really well post-Christmas,” Ball State head coach James Whitford said. “He is really playing like a physical force. We all know talent-wise he is a first-team all-conference player. He has to be that way performance-wise for us to win.”
Ball State out-rebounded Oakland City by a 53-25 margin as a team and registered 28 second-chance points on 24 offensive boards. The Cardinals also protected the ball for most of the night, turning it over a season-low 10 times.
“We talked about us trying to dominate the glass because that’s something we can control; it’s about effort,” Whitford said. “I thought we played hard for 40 minutes, and I thought the second 20 were better than the first 20. I was pleased with the effort tonight.”
The Cardinals took command late in the first half with a 14-3 run that turned a five-point edge into a 16-point advantage. They went into the break with a 42-28 lead.
Oakland City trimmed the lead to 51-42 on a pair of Ryan Helfert free throws with 14:18 to play, but a 12-2 spurt over the next three minutes pushed the Cardinals’ lead to 19 and Ball State cruised the rest of the way. Mading Thok’s layup in the final minute capped the scoring and pushed the margin to 36 points, the largest of the night.
Ten different Ball State players scored in the game. Thok managed four late points to go with six rebounds in just four minutes, while Muncie Central product Kaleb Mallory notched his first career basket on a layup in the closing minutes.
The visiting Mighty Oaks finished with three double-figure scorers in Lawrence Kinney with 13, Byron Dulin with 12 and Kendall Wittmer with 11. Oakland City connected on 7 of 13 attempts from 3-point range but managed to shoot just 10 for 39 inside the arc.
Friday’s game was the first time Ball State played at home since early December. The Cardinals will remain in Muncie for Wednesday’s game with Akron, which is slated to tip at 7 p.m.
Northern Illinois 65, Bethune-Cookman 51
DEKALB, Ill. -- Freshman guard Aaric Armstead (Chicago, Ill./La Jolla Prep) scored a career-best 11 points, sophomore wing Darrell Bowie (Milwaukee, Wis./La Jolla Prep) had 11 points and junior guard Aaron Armstead (Chicago, Ill./Hales Franciscan/San Jose City College) added 10 as the Northern Illinois University men’s basketball team closed non-conference play with a 65-51 victory over Bethune-Cookman on Friday night at the NIU Convocation Center.
Bowie just missed a double-double, finishing with a game-high nine rebounds. Win the victory, NIU improves to 6-6 heading into Mid-American Conference play.
The Huskies shot 46.3 percent (19-of-41) in the contest while holding the Wildcats to just 29.6 percent (16-of-54) shooting. NIU outrebounded Bethune-Cookman, 41-26, and controlled the paint, scoring 32 points in the paint to just 14 for BCU.
“I thought it was a workman-like game for our guys,” said NIU head coach Mark Montgomery. “We came out focused; we got the lead early, we build on the lead, and we came out in the second half and expanded the lead. We had a lot of good basketball from a lot of our guys.
“I thought we established ourselves early against their zone by going inside and we did an unbelievable job defensively. Anytime you can hold a team under 30 percent shooting you have to credit your defense.”
NIU jumped out to a quick start, scoring the first eight points in the contest. Four different players scored, capped by a layup from redshirt junior center Pete Rakocevic (Chicago, Ill./Wilbraham & Monson/Sacramento State) as the Huskies held Bethune-Cookman (2-15) scoreless for the first five minutes of the contest.
Rakocevic finished with nine points and five rebounds, going 3-of-4 from the floor and 3-of-4 from the free-throw line.
The Wildcats answered with the next nine however, taking a 9-8 lead with 13:28 to play in the opening half. The back-and-forth runs continued as the Huskies scored the next eight to lead 16-9 just past the midway point of the half.
NIU led by eight, 30-22, with less than a minute to play before Bowie closed the scoring in the opening 20 minutes with an old-fashioned three-point play, giving the Huskies a 33-22 advantage at the intermission.
Bowie and Aaric Armstead each had six in the first half to pace NIU as the Huskies shot 47.4 percent (9-of-19) from the field and 87.5 percent (14-of-16) from the line in the half, while holding Bethune-Cookman to just 25 percent (7-of-28) shooting.
After the Huskies pushed the lead to 16, 40-24, early in the second half, Bethune-Cookman made a run to cut the lead back to single-digits, 42-33, with 13:50 to play. Following a timeout, NIU responded with the next eight, taking a 50-33 lead.
Bethune-Cookman made six triples in the second half, including a pair in the final two minutes, but by then the game was out of reach as NIU cruised to the 14-point victory.
Clemmye Owens finished with a game-high 19 points, including five triples, for the Huskies. Malik Jackson and Maurice Taylor just missed double-figures with nine each for the shorthanded Wildcats who dressed just eight players.
NIU will open league play on Wednesday night, Jan. 8, as the Huskies travel to Buffalo, N.Y., to take on the Bulls. Game time in the Queen City is scheduled for 6 p.m. CT.