Highlights from last night's MAC men's and women's basketball games:
BGSU 63, Howard 48 — Relax, everybody, they're still undefeated in the Stroh. The name of the game was ball control; BGSU had just nine turnovers to the Bison's 19. Scott Thomas had a crazy efficient 14 points on six shots (7-of-9 from the line) along with eight boards. The surprise of the game was Craig Sealey. I should take back awful things I said about him; OK, they weren't that bad, but his 13-point, 6-rebound night was accentuated with two huge dunks, one off his own fastbreak steal.
The real winner of this game, however? A fan made a half-court shot during a timeout promotion, winning free tacos for a year.
Attendance of the first game in the Stroh? 3,476. Eh, we'll do better next time.
Purdue 96, NIU 34 — Oh God, we'll just skip this one outright. 28 turnovers? That's just ... seriously, 28 turnovers? Somehow Tim Toler finished with 11. Look, the team's gonna be bad. Purdue could contend for a Final Four spot. Next game, please.
EMU 68, Illinois-Chicago 57 — I wondered how long it'd have taken Rob Murphy to notch his first career win with the Eagles. No need to wonder, they got it out of the way rather soon. Based on what I read, they played a sound fundamental game. The box backs that up; very few threes taken, they went to the line a ton (19-of-28) and UIC was throwing up all sorts of trash from the 3-point line. Derek Thompson led the way with 17 points. And center Matt Balkema fouled out in just 12 minutes of play. Efficient!
Buffalo 72, St. Peter's 65 — And another groovy start for a MAC team, bringing the conference to 4-1 on the year. Javon McCrea's line: 18 points, six rebounds, four assists, 4-of-4 from the line, one steal, one block. Get used to it. But Mitchell Watt did him better on the swat-side: four blocks to go with his dozen points. Next thing I was curious about: Zach Filzen's 3-point accuracy: well, 3-for-10 is below average for him. In all UB just rotated eight guys if you include Xavier Ford's five minutes. Hopefully they bring more men into the rhythm; don't want to wear 'em down right away.
In women's games:
EMU 83, Northeastern 53 — Tavelyn James almost did it alone, scoring 42 points on 24 shots. As EMU began the game 19-2, James had 17 of those points. She also had six steals.
Buffalo 65, Niagara 54 — No Kourtney Brown, no problemo. They have other players. Brittney Hedderson scored 19 from a guard position to pace the Bulls over their sorta-crosstown rivals.
Dayton 69, BGSU 38 — This just might be a rough opening to the Falcons season with so many departures. The team shot 24.6 percent from the floor and just were never able to make any sort of run back against an NCAA at-large tournament team from a year ago
Northwestern 69, CMU 60 — Hosting a Big Ten team, the Chippewas had a timely 17-2 run to wash away a 14-point deficit, but then the Wildcats went on a streak of their own to put the game out of reach. Tough luck.
Illinois State 63, Ball State 52
Marshall 93, Kent State 55
Temple 70, Miami 36
Notre Dame 81, Akron 61
Stuff going on Satuday:
NCAA Field Hockey Tournament — OHIO plays top-seeded North Carolina in the first round, 11:30 a.m.
NCAA Women's Soccer Tournament — Toledo travels to Marquette for a first round match, 7 p.m.
NCAA Cross Country Regionals — I haven't dug too deep on info pertaining to this, but I do know they happen Saturday.