Saturday's MAC Men's Basketball Results

Updated 2/1/2014
Saturday’s MAC Men’s Basketball Results
Kent State 60, Akron 57
Ohio 95, Toledo 90 (OT)
Miami 65, Eastern Michigan 61
Northern Illinois 67, Ball State 65 (OT)
Western Michigan 75, Central Michigan 72
Stories courtesy of MAC Sports Information Departments
Kent State 60, Akron 57
KENT, Ohio – Darren Goodson banked in a contested 3-pointer from 28 feet with 1.6 seconds on the clock to lift Kent State to a 60-57 win over the University of Akron on Saturday at the M.A.C. Center.
The victory against their arch-rivals ended the Golden Flashes four-game losing streak for a team that was in a similar position last season. In 2012-13, Kent State was 11-10 and 2-5 in league play before battling back to earn a first-round bye in the Mid-American Conference tournament and capture the 14th 20-win season in 15 years.
With the win this evening, Kent State improved to 12-9 overall and 3-5 in the MAC.
"I'm really happy for Darren because he had a tough time recently, Regardless of what happens this year, that will go down as one of the biggest shots in Kent State history. And I am anticipating this springboarding another run like last season's."
Goodson ended up as the undisputed hero on a night when he struggled for most of the game's first 30 minutes. After missing his first four shots from the floor, Goodson finally connected on a field goal on a jump hook with 10:49 to play.
Even after that basket, Goodson was forced to the bench two minutes later with his fourth foul.
That was when freshman Marquiez Lawrence turned prophet in an attempt to lift his teammate out of frustration. 
"He said 'I promise you are going to hit the shot to win the game," said Goodson. "I swear, that's what he said."
Goodson returned to connect on his next four baskets, including the game-winner. Goodson believed it would be Kris Brewer who would take the game winning shot. When the Kent State point guard's path to the basket was cut off, he kicked the ball to Goodson above the key. The power forward elevated from beyond NBA range and kissed in the game-winner high off of the glass.
Goodson admitted he didn't expect to make the shot.
"My first thought was to get it up and give us a chance at a rebound, but it went in," he said.
Akron could not get off an answer in the final 1.6 seconds.
Goodson finished as the only Kent State player in double figures with 12 points in just 16 minutes, hitting five of his nine shots after the 0-for-4 start. 
Derek Jackson added nine points, including three straight free throws to put Kent State ahead by five points with 3:59 remaining after getting fouled by Akron's Quincy Diggs on a three-pointer from the left wing. 
Akron battled back to tie the game on a layup by Demetrius Treadwell with 34 seconds to play, setting up the game's crazy final seconds.
Treadwell led everyone with 16 points and 10 rebounds. Diggs added 15 points and Harney scored 11 for the Zips.
Akron led by as many as seven points in the first half before Mark Henniger sparked a comeback off the bench. Henniger scored all of his six points in the first half. He also finished with a team-high seven rebounds. 
The Flashes out-scored the Zips 36-30 in the paint, 16-10 off of Akron's 18 turnovers, and 21-11 off of the bench as all 10 Kent State players who took the floor reached the scoring column of the box score.
"Don't be surprised if (Kent State) wins a lot of games," said Akron coach Keith Dambrot. "They have played the toughest schedule to date … They look like a good mid-major basketball team."
Akron fell to 14-7 overall and 6-2 in MAC play.
Kent State will now travel to Central Michigan for a 7 p.m. game on Wednesday, Feb. 5, followed by a 2 p.m. game at Eastern Michigan on Saturday, Feb. 8. 
Ohio 95, Toledo 90 (OT)
ATHENS, Ohio - Fueled by a pair of career-best scoring performances by juniors Maurice Ndour and Stevie Taylor, the Ohio University men's basketball team (16-5, 6-2) defeated Toledo (18-3, 6-2) 95-90 in overtime in front of more than 9,000 fans inside the Convocation Center.
Ndour finished the game with 28 points on 11-of-16 shooting and Taylor finished with 23 points on 9-of-15 shooting. Ndour also tallied three blocks and pulled down 12 rebounds to pick up his fourth double-double on the year.
Ohio trailed by 11 (69-58) with nine minutes to play but used a 14-2 run to build a five-point lead (81-76) with 1:47 to go. Toledo closed the half on a 5-0 run to force overtime, before the 'Cats out-scored the Rockets 12-7 in the extra session.
Senior Nick Kellogg (Westerville, Ohio) chipped in with 18 points and connected on a season-high five 3-pointers. Kellogg also dished out a game and career-high nine assists in 42 minutes on the floor.
As a team, Ohio shot a season-high 53.7 percent (36-67) from the field, including an impressive 5-of-7 (.714) mark in overtime. The 'Cats also tied a season high with 11 3-point field goals and shot 44 percent from beyond the arc.
The 'Cats held a 40-38 edge on the glass and dished out an impressive 22 assists while swatting seven shots. 
Defensively, the 'Cats held Toledo under their season average in field goal percentage (.461) and made six steals in the game. 
Ohio scored 10 of the game’s first 15 points and led 19-18 at the 11:35 mark of the first half after 10 early points from Ndour. Toledo responded with an 11-2 run to take a 29-21 lead, before Ohio exploded for a 22-run that gave the Bobcats a 43-34 lead with 3:11 remaining in the half.
Ohio took a 45-40 lead into intermission after shooting 57.6 percent (19-33) in the stanza.
The Bobcats scored the first four points of the second half to go up nine (49-40), before Toledo responded with a 12-0 run to go up by three at 52-49.
A 3-pointer from Travis Wilkins moved Ohio back ahead by two (56-54), but Toledo opened up its largest lead to that point at nine (69-58) after putting together an 11-0 run. At that point, Ohio cut it to two (69-67), then went on the big 14-2 run to build its late second half lead. 
With the win, the Bobcats improve to 5-0 when they shoot 50 percent or better on the year and 10-2 in games decided by nine points or less. It marked Toledo's first loss in a game decided by five points or less this season (7-1).
Ohio is now 2-1 in overtime games in 2013-14.
Ohio continues cross-over play when the ‘Cats travel to Kalamazoo, Mich., on Wednesday (Feb. 5) for the first of two meetings with Western Michigan. Tip time from University Arena is scheduled for 7 p.m.
Miami 65, Eastern Michigan 61
OXFORD, Ohio--The Miami University men’s basketball team held off a late surge from Eastern Michigan to capture a 65-61 win on Saturday afternoon inside Millett Hall. The win improves the RedHawks to 9-10 overall and 5-3 in Mid-American Conference play. The Eagles move to 12-9 overall and 4-4 in conference.
Leading the charge were junior guard Will Sullivan and senior forward Will Felder. Sullivan converted on 5-of-6 3-point field goals and finished the contest with a game-high 19 points, while Felder added 17 points and a career-high 15 rebounds.
That same duo helped clinch the contest for the Red and White down the stretch. Miami established a 61-55 lead with 1:38 left in the game after a pair of Felder free throws, but EMU drilled back-to-back 3-pointers to knot the game at 61 apiece with 60 seconds left in the contest.
Miami went inside to its senior leader down the stretch. With the shot clock running down, Felder’s jumper got blocked, but Quinten Rollins grabbed the rebound and fed it back to the Cleveland, Ohio native for a short jumper to give Miami a 63-61 lead with 25 seconds remaining.
After a missed 3-pointer by EMU, Sullivan grabbed the rebound and converted on a pair at the charity stripe to secure the victory.
Miami opened the contest just 1-of-9 from the field and trailed 13-4 with 11 minutes remaining in the first half. Freshman guard Jaryd Eustace and Sullivan converted on three consecutive three pointers and senior forward Bill Edwards added a bucket to get the RedHawks to within 17-15, but Miami trailed 30-22 at the half.
The RedHawks did not claim their first lead until a Sullivan layup at 13:07 of the second half.
Joining Sullivan and Felder in double figures was sophomore guard Geovonie McKnight (10 points). Eustace was 3-of-6 from behind the arc to finish the game with nine points.
Miami held an edge in rebounding (39-29) and were 8-of-16 on 3-pointers for the afternoon.
The RedHawks will travel to Northern Illinois (Feb. 4) and Ohio (Feb. 8) before returning home on Feb. 12 in a contest with Buffalo. Those interested in purchasing tickets for Miami's final five home contests, including the game against the Bulls, can get the “MAC Pack” by clicking HERE.
Northern Illinois 67, Ball State 65 (OT)
MUNCIE, Ind. -- Trailing by as much as 15 in the first half, the Northern Illinois University men’s basketball team rallied for a 67-65 overtime victory over Ball State on Saturday afternoon at Worthen Arena. Sophomore Travon Baker (Detroit, Mich./Detroit Consortium) hit a game-tying three with six seconds left in regulation and freshman Aaric Armstead (Chicago, Ill./La Jolla Prep) scored a career-best 14 points in the victory. 
NIU (9-11, 3-5 MAC) played without senior Aksel Bolin (Asker, Norway/Asker), who missed the game due to illness, as the Huskies dressed just nine players. 
“I thought that was two competitive teams that really wanted to win that game,” said NIU head coach Mark Montgomery. “Ball State’s defense and tenacity was unbelievable in the first half. We were fortunate enough to fight back, make it a one-possession game and eventually win it, but Ball State played awfully well. 
“Travon Baker has become our go-to guy late in games … at Kent State he hit two free throws to win it, but that (three at the end of regulation) was probably the biggest shot of his career.”
With Ball State (4-15, 1-7 MAC) leading by nine, 52-43, and less than seven minutes remaining in regulation, NIU went on a 13-2 run, taking a 55-54 lead with 3:38 to play. Sophomore J.J. Cravatta (Streator, Ill./Streator Township) started the run with a triple in front of the Huskie bench, he was fouled, and converted the four-point play. Redshirt junior Jordan Threloff (DeKalb, Ill./DeKalb/Illinois State) added a pair of baskets and a triple by sophomore Darrell Bowie (Milwaukee, Wis./La Jolla Prep), just his second of the season, gave NIU its first lead of the second half. 
Threloff finished with 13 points and a team-high eight rebounds. Cravatta and Bowie each added nine points. 
The Cardinals pulled back in front and led by three, 60-57, as NIU called a timeout with 20 seconds to play in regulation. Following the timeout, Baker drained a triple with nine seconds left to pull the Huskies back even. 
Ball State called a timeout with 6.2 seconds remaining and had a look to win the game, but the shot didn’t fall and the game went to overtime. 
Aaric Armstead opened the extra session with a bucket for the Huskies, but Ball State answered with a basket off an offensive rebound. Baker then rung up a trifecta to push the Huskies back in front with 3:11 left in the overtime. 
A free throw by Baker put the Huskies up four; Ball State trimmed the lead back to one with 32 seconds left. 
Baker split a pair at the line with 17 seconds to play and, without a timeout, Ball State needed to answer to extend, or win, the game. A layup attempt for the Cardinals didn’t go and time ran out with the teams scrambling on the floor for the rebound as NIU finished off the comeback win, snapping a seven-game losing streak to the Cardinals. 
Baker finished with eight points and a career-high tying six assists. 
Chris Bond scored a game-high 16 points to lead Ball State. Jesse Berry added 13 and Zavier Turner had 11 for the Cardinals. 
Even at 5-5 in the early going, Ball State used a 10-0 run to take a 15-5 lead with 14:40 to play in the opening half. Ball State led by 14, 21-7, until back-to-back baskets by redshirt junior Pete Rakocevic (Chicago, Ill./Wilbraham & Monson/Sacramento State) cut the Cardinal lead back to 10 with 5:50 left in the half. 
The Cardinals pushed their lead back to 15, 30-15, but a 7-0 burst to end the half cut the Ball State lead to just eight, 30-22, at the intermission. Junior Aaron Armstead (Chicago, Ill./Hales Franciscan/San Jose City College) started the spurt with a basket, Cravatta added a triple from the wing and Aaron Armstead capped the half with a pair of free throws with less than a second left as he got to the rim after a steal. 
Aaric Armstead scored six points early in the second half, connecting on a triple from the wing and converting an old-fashioned three-point play, as NIU cut the Ball State lead to a half-dozen, 38-32, with 16:21 left. 
A layup by sophomore Daveon Balls (Indianapolis, Ind./Lawrence North) and a pair of free throws from junior Kevin Gray (Chicago, Ill./Brooks Academy) pulled the Huskies within a pair, 38-36, with 14:50 to play, but Ball State responded with the next eight, pushing the lead back to 10, 46-36. 
The Ball State lead was nine following a triple from Bond with 7:13 to play in regulation, setting up the improbable comeback by the Huskies. 
The win, coupled with NIU’s comeback victory at Kent State on Wednesday, marks the first time since March of 2006 that the Huskies have won back-to-back road games in conference play (March 1, 2006 at Ball State, 78-73, and March 4, 2006 at Western Michigan, 74-59).
NIU will return to action on Tuesday, Feb. 4, when the Huskies host Miami (Ohio) at 6 p.m., at the NIU Convocation Center. Note the tip time, 6 p.m., is one hour earlier than the originally scheduled 7 p.m., due to television. 
Western Michigan 75, Central Michigan 72
KALAMAZOO, Mich. - The Western Michigan men's basketball team turned away a furious charge from their in-state rivals in the second half, and the Broncos defeated the Central Michigan Chippewas 75-72 at University Arena on Saturday. With the win, the Broncos improve to 12-8 on the season and 5-3 in Mid-American Conference play.
WMU dominated the first half of the game, leading by as many as 23 points and holding a 42-25 lead at halftime. However, the Chippewas battled back and briefly held a one-point lead with 2:30 remaining in regulation. David Brown made a pair of free throws to put the Broncos ahead for good, though, and Tucker Haymond opened it up to a three-point game with a lay-up off a feed from Brown. CMU's John Simons cut the deficit to one point with 15 seconds remaining on a three-point shot, but the Broncos broke the Chippewas' press and Austin Richie laid it in with seven seconds remaining to seal the win.
Brown led the way for the Broncos with 20 points on 6-of-13 shooting, as well as a 7-of-8 day from the free throw line; he also recorded seven rebounds, a career-high four assists, and four steals. Shayne Whittington had 14 points and a game-high eight rebounds. Four different bench players contributed on the score sheet for the Broncos, including Kellen McCormick, who had a bench-high six points, and Mario Matasovic, who finished with five.
The game began with an 8-0 Bronco run, highlighted by four points from Whittington and capped with a fast break lay-up from Brown at the 17:08 mark of the period. Brown upped the lead to 10 points with another fast break make, stealing the ball from Austin Stewart and going coast-to-coast to make it a 15-5 advantage. Whittington threw down a dunk with 9:40 remaining to increase the Bronco lead to 11 points, and Brown drained an open 3 from the right wing on the next possession to give the Broncos a 23-9 lead with 9:08 remaining in the first half.
Richie and McCormick were the next to strike for the Broncos, with each making three-pointers to bring the lead to 29-9. AJ Avery topped things off with a mid-range jumper with 6:06 remaining before Chris Fowler stopped the five-minute Chippewa drought with a pair of free throws. Mario Matasovic made a baseline dunk at the 3:33 mark to give the Broncos a 40-17 lead, their largest of the day, but the Chippewas would score eight of the final 10 points of the half to make it a 42-25 game at the break.
The lead continued to hover around that mark early in the second half, with Richie drilling a three-pointer from the left wing to make it 53-35 with 14:18 to play in regulation. The Chippewas clawed back in, though, cutting the deficit to fewer than 10 points with a three-pointer from John Simons at the 9:08 mark. It became a two-possession game for the first time on a lay-up from Blake Hibbitts at the 6:33 mark, and CMU finally took the lead with a pair of free throws from Fowler with 2:30 remaining. However, Brown re-took the lead for the Broncos with a pair of free throw makes on the next possession, and WMU iced the win on the shot from Richie.