’Hawks knock of BGSU
Published: Thursday, January 17, 2013
Updated: Thursday, January 17, 2013 23:01
The Miami University men’s basketball team notched its second consecutive victory Wednesday night, defeating Bowling Green State University 63-60 in dramatic fashion.
Miami is now 7-8 (2-1 Mid-American Conference (MAC)). Despite Miami surrendering 57 percent shooting and the Falcons having two 21-point scorers, the game shifted in the RedHawks’ favor late.
Redshirt junior forward Will Felder finished with a career high 20 points, while redshirt junior center Drew McGhee recorded a new season high 14. Roberts also chipped in 13 points for Miami.
“I tried to capitalize on opportunities that presented themselves, and the ball went in the basket,” Felder said.
Miami’s 55 percent shooting and 36 points in the paint carried the team on a night it couldn’t find the stroke from deep, shooting a dismal 2-14 from beyond the arc. This was the second consecutive close game the ‘Hawks won and the first when trailing at the break.
“It came down to mental toughness,” Head Coach John Cooper said. “I tried to stress to my team getting the right result, not necessarily how they went about it. It was an up and down game, but at the end, we got the result we wanted.”
Bowling Green wasted no time, jumping out to an early 9-0 lead within the first five minutes of action. The Falcons set the pace of the game, playing up tempo and executing their half court offense with little resistance from a disjointed ‘Hawks defense.
“It was one of those games where we never really had momentum,” Cooper said. “I thought [Bowling Green] did a terrific job having momentum, especially on the road. They hit some big shots late in the shot clock, but somehow we were able to weather the storm.”
Miami battled back to take its first lead of the game at the 12:01 mark, but largely found itself behind from 5-10 points throughout the first half. Bowling Green went into the break with a four-point advantage on 64 percent shooting. Falcons seniors, guard Jordan Crawford and forward A’uston Calhoun led the way with 13 points apiece at the half. Miami wasn’t far behind, despite the slow start, with 56 percent from the floor.
The second half was a more tightly contested game, as Miami’s big men made their presence felt in the scoreboard. Felder and McGhee were able to find quality looks from 18 feet out to just in front of the basket. The RedHawks were also able to take away the inside game of Falcons sophomore forward Richaun Holmes, who was 3-3 in the first half on alley-oop dunks.
Crawford and Calhoun continued pacing Bowling Green, but Miami found a defensive answer at the 8:55 mark in the second half, mustering up several defensive stops and turnovers. After trailing 55-49 with nearly nine minutes to go, tied the game at 57 just five minutes later.
“We have to play better defensively,” Bowling Green Head Coach Louis Orr said. “Offensively, we played a great game, but that drought late in the game with turnovers and not being able to stop them (Miami) really hurt us.”
Miami took the lead for good on a jumper by Felder with two minutes left, 61-60. Freshman guard Geovonie McKnight helped secure the win, grabbing a big defensive rebound with just over 90 seconds to play and taking a charge with 54 seconds left. On the ensuing possession, senior guard Quinten Rollins sank a running floater with two seconds on the shot clock.
Redshirt junior guard Allen Roberts came up with a steal with 10 seconds to play, but missed the front end of a one-and-one, giving Crawford and the Falcons one final chance to send the game into overtime. The crowd at Millett held its collective breath, as Crawford’s desperation attempt hit the back iron at the buzzer.
Miami now heads to Eastern Michigan University for a 2 p.m. tipoff Saturday. The Eagles are 8-9 on the year, coming off a win over Central Michigan University. Miami defeated Eastern Michigan last season 62-57 in overtime in Oxford.
Senior guard Derek Thompson leads the Eagles, averaging 11.6 points a game, but on just 37 percent shooting. The Eagles shoot just 39 percent as a team and have lost their last four of five contests.