CLEVELAND, Ohio -- Junior Antonio Campbell showed the Northern Illinois Huskies why he was recently named Mid-American Conference Player of the Year as he scored 21 points with eight rebounds and a steal as the Ohio Bobcats had little trouble in beating the Northern Illinois Huskies 79-62 in a quarterfinal game of the 2016 MAC Men’s Basketball Tournament presented by VisitMyrtleBeach.com Thursday night at Quicken Loans Arena.
With the victory, Ohio (21-10) advanced to the semifinals Friday evening against the winner of Miami –Buffalo.
“We Survived and advanced” Ohio head coach Saul Phillips said. “The biggest take away from tonight was our poise on the tournament stage.”
Campbell led five Bobcats in double figures as . . .
Northern Illinois (21-12) finished the season winning three of its last five games.
“The first half did us in.” NIU head man Mark Montgomery said.
Freshman Marshawn Lynch led all scorers in the contest with 22 points. Fellow frosh Levi Bradley came off the bench to score 10.
Ohio had not seen game action for nearly a week. Nonetheless, they were on their game from the start, hitting six of their first eight shots
NIU had its only lead of the game, 16-12, at the 18:26 mark on a transition layup by Wilson. The Huskies did keep the game close until Ohio ended the half outscoring NIU 10-5 to take a nine point lead at intermission 36-27.
When the second half began, Ohio lengthened its lead, reaching as much as 24 points, 59-35, at the 13:08 mark when Kaminski hit a pair of free throws. The closest NIU would get for the remainder of the game was 13 points 64-51 on a three by Laytawn Porter with 7:18 remaining.
Ohio won by 17, taking the rubber game of the season series, with both teams winning on each other’s floor.
With its victory, OU moves on to the semi-finals, where it will meet Buffalo in Friday’s second game (9 p.m. ET). The Bobcats posted a 94-75 road win Feb. 12, but they needed overtime to edge the Bulls 103-96 later in Athens.