Being completely honest, Eastern Michigan does not deserve to be playing in Cleveland Wednesday.
Northern Illinois out worked them in the second half, which is not saying much, and almost made a eleven point deficit with less than nine minutes to play go away.
A three pointer by Northern Illinois' Aksel Bolin cut the deficit to six with 6:30 to play in the game. What ensued was NIU getting to loose balls and EMU taking awful shots. It looked like the Eagles thought the game was in the bag. The bag was being emptied in front of 302 people that decided to make the trip (how exactly do you recruit that?).
The Eagles, lulled to sleep, did not wake back up until there was only 32 seconds left to play, and they were down by two. Northern Illinois had worked all the way back, as they found open looks and knocked down clutch shots.With just over a half a minute to play, the Eagles got their clutch moment.
Jalen Ross found an open look and knocked down a three to put his team back up by one. It was a beautiful stroke that was almost certain to go in as soon as it left his hand.
It left NIU with some time however, and they got an equally open shot. A three pointer from just off the nearside baseline that hit the back rim, popped up and out of the basketball ended the game. You could see the NIU bench jump up and subdue their emotions when they realized that their season was over.
Eastern Will now take on Miami at the Q Wednesday.