UB 91, Central Michigan 73
How UB Won: The offense rolled all night as the Bulls shot 57.7 percent from the field, 42.1 percent from three, established a season-high for points and became the first team this season (including Michigan) to reach 90 on the young Chippewas. Smaller CMU couldn't deal with UB's inside game as the Bulls 4-5 players combined to shoot 20 of 29. The MAC West remains a drain on the MAC's conference RPI -- and its reputation.
Player of the Game: Junior forward Cameron Downing went off for a career-high 21 points, including a clear-the-runways dunk, while junior guard Auraum Nuiriankh supplemented his career-high 18 points with 10 rebounds -- his second double-double of the season. You choose.
Caution Flag: The Bulls were sailing along in the first half until they needed to go to the bench for backcourt assistance. They didn't get it. They committed six turnovers in 4 1/2 minutes, two by swingham Raphell Thomas-Edwards. Backcourt depth remains a major concern with point guard Jarod Oldham sidelined by a fracture wrist.
Stat Check: The Bulls had more offensive rebounds (14) than the Chips had defensive rebounds (10).
Stat Check II: Nuiriankh's 12-for-12 effort at the free throw line lead a 23-for-26 showing (88.5%). The Bulls came in shooting a hair under 70 percent.
Bench Press: Downing's 21 points off the bench were five more than UB got from reserves in the last two games combined.
On Target: CMU senior guard Kyle Randall was fourth in MAC scoring coming in. He'll jump up with Wednesday's 23.
In the House: The were 2,552 at the Big A.
What it Means: UB has won three of four to improve to 8-13 overall, 3-4 against the MAC and 2-0 against the MAC West. CMU is 9-11, 2-11.
Next Up: Talk about goofball conference scheduling. UB plays at West-leading Western Michigan on Saturday, returns home, then turns around plays at Eastern Michigan on Wednesday. Explain to me how that benefits the student part of college athletics. Or did the MAC buy a plane? UB tried to get Eastern Michigan to move the game up a day so they could stay in state. The Eagles wouldn't budge.
They Said It . . .
UB coach Reggie Witherspoon: "I thought Central posed us with some dilemmas a little bit in that they came in shooting more threes than anybody else in the league and we were going to have to guard out by the arc and still have enough energy to do what we want to do around the basket. . . . This was also I think the first time we've had a team that pressed from the beginning of the game until the end."
Downing: "We all knew they were undersized so we all knew we'd have the advantage inside."
Witherspoon on the upcoming trip: "We are actually leaving tomorrow. Going to drive about three hours, then we're going to pull over and finish the rest of the drive Friday, pull in there and play Saturday. We're going to have three different hotels on this trip. Spend the night Saturday somewhere three hours from Western to here, get up Sunday and finish the rest of the drive. Come home, check in at home for a couple days at get back out there."
-- Bob DiCesare
taggedCollege basketball | Mid-American Conference | University at Buffalo