MAC tournament: Eastern Michigan suffocates Miami, 58-47

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

The RedHawks scored one point in a 10-minute span. Yep.

Basketball is not always an elegant game. Eastern Michigan has traditionally not made it a beautiful spectacle, and that could explain the attendance. Everybody wants a "win," much like several people enjoy sausage, but they often care not to see how it is manufactured. When EMU wins, they manufacture it in a very tedious way, but it works for them.




The fans didn't like it, but Rob Murphy certainly did. And he has to be thrilled with Da'Shonte Riley, the anchor of that zone defense which forced 20 turnovers in the game. Along with 10 points on the other side, he accounted for nine rebounds (eight defensive), four steals and three blocks. There wasn't much to sing about for EMU on the other side, but Derek Thompson did muster 14 points on 4-for-10 shooting, while dishing out five assists.

A couple of late 3-pointers inflated Miami's O-PPP to about 0.74, which is saying something. They went about 10 minutes without a field goal, totaling just one point in that stretch. It took them over 16 minutes until they scored 10 points for the half, and they experienced similar droughts in the first half. Will Felder and Jon Harris each scored 14 points, which is good for them but the rest of the team totaled just 19 points on 22 shots.

After a tremendous, improbable win at Bowling Green, perhaps a game like this out of Miami was to be expected. John Cooper had a rough first year in Oxford, but everybody always does, but he's losing just one player to graduation (backup center Vince Legarza). Next year he should have a healthy Bill Edwards and Allen Roberts with a good meniscus.

But Eastern Michigan finally wins a game in Cleveland for the first time in five years. In tomorrow's quarterfinals they'll meet Western Michigan, the 3-seed and MAC West champions. They split the season series on them, so this could be another crawl to 50 if Murphy and his defense gets their way. But Western likes the game in the high 60s and their defense isn't too shabby either.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Hustle Belt

You must be a member of Hustle Belt to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Hustle Belt. You should read them.

Join Hustle Belt

You must be a member of Hustle Belt to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Hustle Belt. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9341_tracker