Ooh, close game, right? Kind of. It was close in the sense that Toledo only netted three more points than Central Michigan. I guess that's the textbook definition of close. But that was merely the final score. Give UT three more minutes and they'd have won by 12.
That's pretty much how this one went; UT goes on a run, CMU shoots their way back into it, rinse, repeat, ad infinitum.
When the dust settled Rian Pearson showed why he should've bee more than a second team All-MAC honoree: 20 points, 15 rebounds, a couple steals, and overall the pendulum pusher that kept stretching the Rockets lead. Juice Brown had a nice night with 18 points and five assists. Reese Holliday provided 12 points and nine rebounds.
Austin McBroom had a basket to possibly tie the game; he was surrounded by a phalanx of defenders, and after swishing a three on the previous possession (which looked like he was fouled), the ball didn't even come close. Who knows if he was fouled? I'm pretty sure hitting Austin McBroom is never a foul. If the league finds out about this, everybody's going to be hitting him next season. Maybe they should change that rule.
And what's the deal with Trey Zeigler not being able to hit a free throw? That play might've sealed the game; in the final minute, CMU didn't need to hit a three. A quick two would've been enough. Once Zeigler touched the ball, Holliday fouled him rather quickly, and worked out wonderfully as Zeigler couldn't hit either of his free throws. He was 1-for-6 on the night, which officially puts him at under 50 percent on free throws for the year (49.48%). How? HOW? He's a shooting guard. He shoots 46.2% from the floor, and about that much from the line.
This should not be. Not for a team's top guard. Last year that number was a bit better but not by much: 56.6%. I'm not even going to look it up, but this might be the worst percentage by a starting guard in the country.
Zeigler finished with 17 points, eight rebounds and four assists ... but we all know more was needed. Olivier Mbaigoto had the top game, I'd say, with 14 points and eight rebounds. Derek Jackson shot and shot until he wound up with 16 points, and McBroom eventually got to 13 points.
Toledo's next task? OHIO, whom they did beat. More games of runs abound.