| || |
TU men v. Northern Michigan
January 2, 2011 - Zach Baker
With just under 15 minutes to go, it's Northern Michigan 15, Travis Spahr 10. Other than Spahr, no offense for TU. With 14:40 remaining, Richard Morrow draws a goaltending. So it's 15-12. Northern Michigan has gotten most of its points in transition, leading to easy baskets.
With 9:43 left in the first half, it's 16-all. Mike Brown just hit a jumper for the Dragons, whose defense has improved since the early going. Rafael Cuellar has three boards.
Not entirely sure of the percentage TU is shooting from 3, but it can't be good. Sometimes Joe Graessle and Keenan Barlow like to get the ball, step up and launch. That's fine when you make it. But Graessle has one trey, and Barlow has none. NM leads, 27-26, 4:53 left in half.
With about a minute left, Northern Michigan leads, 34-32. TU'd be leading if it wasn't for a pedestrian effort from the line. (1:29)
At the half, TU trails 36-33.
Won't win many games 3 of 11 from the foul line.
Dragons offense has gone cold, and is down 47-39. In just about every game, TU has played close, but for whatever reason it seems to get sloppy at some point, and it kills it.
Brian Scott's right wing 3 pulls the Dragons to within 49-44 with 11:29 left. Northern Michigan is getting scoring all over the place. Matt Everson has eight, leading the five out there right now.
Matthew Craggs buries a right wing 3, and the Wildcats lead is bumped up to 10. TU's offense hasn't been consistent at all in the second half. (9:14)
Craggs drains another 3, then TU turns it over, leading to an NMU layup. Spahr retalliates with a possible three-point play, but it feels like it's slipping from the Dragons, who trail, 61-50. (7:52)
Every time you want to write TU off, it surprises you. The Dragons are on an 8-0 run and have closed the gap to 70-67 with 2:51 left. One of these days they'll close out one of these things. Will it be today? We'll see. All I know is you can never count them out of a game.
TU leads, 72-70. John Hill inserted Brian Scott at just the right time, and he rewarded his coach with a right corner trey. Spahr has 27 points. Just a monster.
Tiffin wins, thanks to Travis Spahr (27 points, 13 rebounds, Brian Scott (9 points, but BIG ones) and Cuellar (9 points, 10 boards). OK, that's too simplistic. The Dragons came together in the final minutes, and despite some late missteps that made the game way too exciting ( a turnover set up an NMU 3 attempt at the buzzer), a 76-73 win is all that matters.