Site: Ypsilanti, Mich. (Convocation Center)
Score: Eastern Michigan University 79, Madonna University 70
Records: MU 1-3; EMU 1-1
Next MU event: Thursday, November 18 vs. Alma | WHAC / MIAA Challenge (Olivet, Mich.) 5:30 p.m.
YPSILANTI, Mich. (MadonnaCrusaders.com) - - After trailing by 17 at the half Madonna University men's basketball team held NCAA Division I Eastern Michigan University scoreless for nearly four minutes late in the second half to pull back to with-in six but the Eagles survived the drought to escape with the 79-70 win inside the Convocation Center on Wednesday (Nov. 17).
Senior Bryant Slaughter (Westland, Mich. / Cherry Hill Academy) led all scorers with 22 points to go along with seven rebounds. Junior Kevin Henry (Toledo, Ohio / St. Francis DeSales) added 13 markers and six rebounds while freshman Bobby Naubert (Livonia, Mich. / Stevenson) joined the duo in double figures with 10. Junior Geoff Gaylor (Roscommon, Mich. / Roscommon) just missed out on a double-double with nine points and nine rebounds. Antonio Green led EMU with 17 points.
After trading scores early, Henry knocked down a triple to tie the game at 5-5 with 18:20 left in the first half. After EMU went up four, back-to-back lay ups from freshman Derek Lennen (Schoolcraft, Mich. / Schoolcraft) tied the game again, this time at nine-all.
EMU retook the lead but could not push it past four and after Slaughter hit a runner in the lane, he connected on a three to put MU on top for the first time all day at 14-13. After Gaylor tied the game at 16-all on a layup with 10:07 left in the half, the Eagles went on a 16-7 run over the next five and a half minutes to stake themselves to an 11 point lead at 32-21.
The Crusaders cut the lead down to eight on a three from Lennen that made it 32-24 but the Eagles closed the half on a 12-3 run over the final 3:07 and Adrian Burton knocked down a triple then a long two as time expired to make it 44-27 at half time.
MU connected at a 31 percent rate (11-for-35) while EMU shot 39.5 percent (15-for-38) from the floor in the opening 20 minutes. The Eagles knocked down 10 of their 14 free throws in the first half while the Crusaders did not attempt a shot from the charity stripe.
The Crusaders came out for the second half on fire, out-scoring the Eagles 11-4 with Naubert hitting two quick threes to start the run and trim EMU's lead to 10, 48-43 with 17:48 left in the game.
EMU managed to use a fast-break attack to push its lead back to 15, 71-56 with just over seven minutes to go after Green connected on a three from deep in the right corner.
MU did not go away, using a stifling defense to keep EMU off the board for nearly four minutes and trim the deficit to just six, 72-66 when Slaughter connected on a three and Henry split a pair of free throws with 2:17 left.
With the Crusaders forced to foul and try to extend the game, the Eagles knocked down five of their six free throw attempts in the final two minutes for the nine point win, 79-70.
The Crusaders made a drastic improvement in the second half, shooting nearly 47 percent from the floor (14-for-30) while connecting on seven triples to outscore the Eagles 43-35. The Eagles cooled over the final 20 minutes, shooting 36 percent (13-for-36) from the floor. EMU won the battle on the glass, 47-44, but MU won the defensive rebounding battle 32-29.
Madonna continues its three games in three day stretch, taking part in the WHAC / MIAA Challenge. The Crusaders open up Thursday (Nov. 18) with a 5:30 p.m. game against Alma College. Olivet College - MU's Friday opponent - hosts this year's event that pits one of the best NCAA Division III conferences with one of the NAIA's best.
Contact: Patrick Moore (734) 432-5834