Today in MAC basketball, where it felt a bit like 1999 all over again:
Buffalo 84, Dayton 55 — Even if you're not a religious person, don't the words JESUS CHRIST suddenly formulate inside your inner being and escape your mouth at this score? Dayton had big wins against Minnesota and Wake Forest, all whilst trying to sneak into the Top 25. Buffalo — BUFFALO! — went in there and pounded them, playing essentially a perfect game.
Everything went right. Javon McCrea almost had a double-double 15 minutes in, and finished with 17 points, 11 rebounds and six assists. Mitchell Watt also double-doubled with 16 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists. Is this a trend of passing forwards that I see unfold? I suppose that's how you replace Byron Mulkey's presence. Establish the post game, get in a simple feed, and find the open man — usually Zach Filzen, who had the grinchiest night of all: 24 points (6-of-11 shooting threes). I can't imagine UD is this bad or UB is this good. It might be a perfect storm of "best game/worst game" however this is what Buffalo can do in the MAC East.
OHIO 70, Marshall 68 — Another road victory at a higher-graded conference. Keep piling them onto the plate. They tried real hard to blow the lead in the waning moments, getting outscored by 10 points in the final four minutes. But the lead was too great. Another poor shooting night by D.J. Cooper didn't sour his game as he racked up 11 points and 11 assists along with four steals. Reggie Keely was the prime scorer with 16. And Athens goes amok with glee by topping their Huntin'ton foes in both football and basketball.
Toledo 75, UNC-Wilmington 73 — It took some patience, as well as a schedule softer than Nerf products, but Toledo is now 5-1, notching more wins in November than either of the past two seasons (4-28). UNCW held the lead for much of the first half but not by much, and UT struck gold in the second half thanks to their Three Transfers netting 51 of the points: Dominique Buckley had 21, Rian Pearson finished with 18 (and nine rebounds), and Matt Smith added 12. I'm not saying they stand a chance against Temple next week. I'm not saying it. ALTHOUGH.
Western Michigan 80, Hope College 58 — There, ya won't go winless this year. At the expense of a Division III school.
Akron 84, Cleveland State 74 — The Zips are playing some fine ball lately, now winning three in a row, all on "sorta" the road. Rachel Tecca went off for 26 points and hauled down 10 rebounds. Jasmine Mushington also cleaned up from the forward position with 18 points and six assists.
CMU 58, Wichita State 49 — Excellent defense by the Chips forced 26 turnovers on 16 steals. Jessica Green, Crystal Bradford and Niki DiGuilio had a Tufnelian game with 11 points, 11 points, 11 points across the board.
Wright State 81, Buffalo 54
St. Bonaventure 60, Kent State 51
Youngstown State 80, WMU 55
UNC-Wilmington 56, OHIO 51
Today's men's games:
7:00 p.m. — EMU at Colgate
7:00 p.m. — Morehead State at Kent State
Today's women's games:
11:00 a.m. — Iona at Toledo
7:00 p.m. — Detroit at Ball State