The 6-4 senior who transferred in from Cincinnati, capped a Ball State rally from 11 points down at halftime and 16 points in the second half. The hosts had trailed
Miami started strong and led until Ryan Weber’s 3-pointer with 2:38 left in the contest edged BSU in front, 44-43. Two free throws by Weber gave the Cardinals a three-point advantage before Eric Washington dropped in a free throw for MU.
Brian Oddo pulled down a rebound at . . .
The basket came with :28 seconds remaining and was the only tie of the entire game. Ball State owned the shot clock and, with Davis’s late score, also owned a win. It was the second straight win, and fifth in the last six games for Ball State, which continues to impress after going 7-13 last season.
Miami, meanwhile, fell to its seventh straight loss and remains winless on the road in 2015.
Once again, seniors Washington and Geovonie McKnight provided the bulk of Miami’s scoring. McKnight added 11 points and a team-high eight rebounds to Washington’s 26. Only three other MU players score, and non had more than four points. Chris Bryant (4) provided Miami’s only bench points.
Ball State got 21 points from its bench. Among them was 10 from Davis, who tied for team-high honors with 10 points. Senior forward Ryan Weber was the only starter to reach double figures in what was a low-scoring tilt.
“Technically, there were some things they were doing that were making it hard on us that we didn’t adjust to well,” Ball State head coach James Whitford said. “Miami is a different team. They can press you; they can play 1-3-1; they‘ve played a lot of zone. We didn’t expect them to play 40 minutes of man. It’s not consistent with who they’ve been, and that caught us off guard.”
Ball State hit just 28.5 percent while struggling to 17 points over the first 20 minutes. Its comeback came on the strength of somewhat better 43.5 percent shooting after intermission – along with Miami’s second half scoring struggles.
The RedHawks managed just 18 points in the final stanza, connecting on just 27.8 percent after hitting 47.6 percent in the opening period. Miami tallied 10 field goals before intermission and just five after the break. Washington owned four of those five MU field goals and two baskets – both 3-point goals – came in the first three minutes of the second half. Miami scored two field goals after 17:13 until Washington’s game-tying shot with 28 ticks left.
"At the end of the day, we struggled shooting," Miami head coach John Cooper said. "When you hold a team to 48 points, then you've done what you need to do defensively. ... I thought we did a good job on their main players and not letting those guys beat us. ...Now, from an offensive standpoint, you've got to be able to score."
Miami will try to get back on the winning track Tuesday when it entertains Buffalo (7 p.m. ET). Ball State is also home Tuesday when it hosts Kent State ( 7 p.m. ET).
►Over its first three MAC games, Ball State had shot 48 percent from the field. It finished at 36.4 percent against Miami.
► Ball State is 9-1 on the home court this season.
► Miami has struggled from both the outside and inside. "We've got to be able to finish those plays when the ball goes inside," Cooper said of the latter. He also noted the issues were exacerbated Saturday when "We had some opportunities there in transition, where we don't finish and don't get a foul."
► Both teams owned 17 turnovers, but Ball State had a 14-6 advantage in points off turnover.
► Neither team recorded any points off turnovers.
► Ball State hit seven treys (7 of 18), while Miami connected on four (4 of 9).
► Rebounds were nearly even, with BSU recording just two more (29-27).
► Bo Calhoun led Cardinal rebounders with eight. Ryan Weber had six.
► The hosts registered four blocks to none by Miami.