Northern Illinois 71, Eastern Michigan 68
Kent State 79, Central Michigan 73
Toledo 67, Western Michigan 59
The Bowling Green Falcons moved to 2-1 in conference plays following an 83-74 victory at Ohio University on Saturday afternoon.
Bowling Green moves to 11-5 on the season with the win. For BGSU, the win marked the program's first at Ohio on a Saturday since 2009. The Bobcats fell to 1-2 in conference play and 7-9 overall.
Ben Vander Plas led Ohio with 25 points and was joined in double figures by Jason Preston (15), Jordan Dartis (12) and Sylvester Ogbonda (11).
Guards Justin Turner (29 points) and Dylan Frye (19 points) led the Falcons. Bowling Green erased a 10-point halftime deficit by outscoring the Bobcats by a 50-31 margin over the final 20 minutes.
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By EVAN MEYER
KENT, OHIO – The Kent State Golden Flashes improved to 3-0 in Mid-American Conference play with a 79-73 hard fought victory over the Central Michigan Chippewas Saturday afternoon at the MAC Center.
It was a familiar story for Central Michigan (9-7, 2-1 MAC) in at least once sense. The Chippewas are winless on the road this season in seven attempts.
Kent State (13-3, 3-0 MAC) picked up its third consecutive victory and fifth in the last six games while remaining perfect at home with a 9-0 record.
The Flashes played the game without senior Phillip Whittington, who was battling the flu.
“A really good win for us”. KSU head coach Rob Senderoff said. “It was not easy, especially in the second half. We need to play better with four of the next five on the road.”
Senior Antonio Williams led all scorers in the contest with a career high 23 points, going 9-of-17 from the field with four rebounds and four assists. Senior Troy Simons added 13, sophomore Anthony Roberts notched 12 and junior Danny Pippen had 10 points with 14 rebounds -- his third double-double of the season.
Senior Rob Montgomery led four Chippewas in double figures with 16 points 14 coming in the second half. Junior Travon Broadway Jr had 14, Seniors Dallas Morgan also had 14 and David Di Leo added 12.
FULL STORY HERE
DEKALB, Ill. -- Leading by 15 with two minutes to play, the Northern Illinois University men’s basketball team withstood a late Eastern Michigan run to earn a 71-68 victory over the Eagles on Saturday afternoon (Jan. 11) at the NIU Convocation Center.
Senior Eugene German (Gary, Ind./21st Century Charter) scored 17 points while senior Noah McCarty (Rock Falls, Ill./Sterling Newman) tied a career-high with 14 as the Huskies improved to 9-7 overall, 2-1 in Mid-American Conference play.
“The good news is we closed it out and won the game,” said NIU head coach Mark Montgomery. “I thought we dominated for 38 minutes. “We played well, we defended well, we rebounded, we had 18 assists, we did a lot of things at a high level, we just have to learn how to close teams out with four minutes to go, that is a work in progress.”
A basket by sophomore Trendon Hankerson (Novi, Mich./Novi) gave the Huskies a 64-49 lead with 2:07 to play before back-to-back triples from Noah Morgan quickly trimmed the lead back to nine. Another three with 35 seconds remaining pulled the Eagles within four, 66-62. A free throw from Hankerson made the NIU lead five but Morgan made a bucket on the other end, and was fouled, with 24 seconds left.
Morgan missed the free throw, but Eastern Michigan got the offensive rebound and Yeikson Montero scored to cut the NIU advantage to 67-66.
With 19 seconds to play, junior Rod Henry-Hayes (Zion, Ill./Zion-Benton Township) made a pair at the line to increase the NIU lead to three. A defensive stop, followed by two more free throws by Henry-Hayes with nine seconds left finally put the game on ice for the Huskies.
Eastern Michigan (10-6, 0-3 MAC) had a 7-4 lead in the early going before NIU used a 10-0 run to take a seven-point lead. German ignited the burst with five, Henry-Hayes added a triple and junior Nathan Scott (Naperville, Ill./Olney Central College) knocked down a jumper as the Huskies led 14-7 with 10:41 to play in the opening half.
The Eagles scored the next half-dozen to trim the NIU advantage to one before a triple by Hankerson stopped the Eastern Michigan burst.
Hankerson finished with nine points and a career-best six assists.
A 9-2 run gave Eastern Michigan a three-point lead, 22-19, before buckets from freshman Tyler Cochran (Bolingbrook, Ill./Bolingbrook) and McCarty gave the lead back to the Huskies, 23-22, with just under four minutes to play in the half.
After an Eastern Michigan basket cut the NIU lead back to one, the Huskies closed the half with the next nine as NIU took a 32-24 lead into the intermission. Sophomore Darius Beane (Carbondale, Ill./Southern Illinois) started the run with a triple, Cochran added the next three, Hankerson had a pair of free throws and McCarty made a free throw to give the Huskies an eight-point lead at the break.
NIU scored the first six points out of the intermission as the Huskie lead grew to 14. McCarty and senior Lacey James (Grand Rapids, Mich./Rider) each converted baskets and German made a pair of free throws to give NIU a 38-24 lead two minutes into the second stanza.
The Huskie advantage was 11 when consecutive buckets from Scott and a trifecta from German ballooned the NIU lead to 47-29 with 14:34 left.
NIU was still up 18 with just under 11 minutes remaining before Eastern Michigan used a 10-2 run to pull back within 10, 56-56, with a little over five minutes to play.
A triple by German helped the Huskie lead grow back to 13 and the advantage was up to 15 with just over two minutes left before the late comeback attempt by the Eagles.
Morgan led Eastern Michigan with 16 points off the bench, Montero added 15 points while Boubacar Toure scored 14 points with 11 rebounds.
TOLEDO, Ohio – The Toledo men's basketball team dominated the boards and locked down on defense on Saturday evening to register a 67-59 victory over Western Michigan in its Mid-American Conference home opener.
"This was a must-win game for us," Head Coach Tod Kowalczyk said. "We knew our backs were against the wall after starting out 0-2 in league play. Our guys weren't going to panic, because they understood that we had played five of our last six games on the road against some good teams. This is a team that believes in itself and trusts each other."
Seniors Willie Jackson and Luke Knapke each posted double-doubles to lead the Rockets (9-7, 1-2 MAC) to a 46-29 cushion on the glass. Jackson tallied 12 points and a game-high 16 rebounds, while Knapke scored a team-high 14 points to go along with 10 boards. Also scoring in double digits were junior Spencer Littleson (12 pts.), junior Marreon Jackson (12 pts.) and redshirt freshman Keshaun Saunders (10 pts.).
Marreon Jackson also dished out nine assists and grabbed six rebounds while playing with the flu for 35 minutes.
"I'm so proud of Marreon," Kowalczyk said. "He had a bad case of the flu at three in the morning, missed this morning's shootaround and has had only liquids today. He gets the game ball tonight for just fighting through that and playing well."
Junior Brandon Johnson topped WMU offensively with 23 points. Toledo held the Broncos' leading scorer, Michael Flowers, to 13 points on 5-of-15 shooting.
Toledo held WMU to a 36.5 field-goal percentage, while making 48.2 percent of its shots. The Rockets stymied the Bronco attack for much of the second half as WMU scored 11 of its 27 second-half points in the final two minutes.
A 9-0 run midway spanning nearly seven minutes put the Rockets in front 52-40 with 6:30 left. The closest Western Michigan came down the stretch was seven points with 42 seconds remaining.