Tag Archives: Central Michigan University

Eastern Michigan Beats Shorthanded Chippewas at McGuirk

The crowd at McGuirk arena gathered for a MAC conference showdown between in-state rivals Eastern Michigan and Central Michigan University on Tuesday night.

The CMU Chippewas were riding high and hoping to continue their momentum against the visiting Eagles as they prepare for a run in March. However, the contest was not without some added difficulty, as the Chippewas were missing two starters, Devontae Lane (injury) and Dallas Morgan (illness).

Despite missing two key players, the Chippewas were able to take a lead into the half thanks in large part to 8 three point buckets. The Eagles were able to keep things relatively close on the back of stellar three point shooting of their own by Italian guard, Thomas Binelli, who hit 4 straight in the first half. The Chippewas kept the Eagle attack at bay and out of the hands of 7-foot Senegalese big man, Boubacar Toure. The strategy paid off in the first half, as CMU was able to force several handling errors in the post, which kept Toure from devastating the shorthanded Chippewas.

In the second half, the Chippewas shooting slowed and the Eagles were able to consistently get the ball to Toure, who proved unstoppable once the ball was entered successfully to the paint. Binelli’s shooting cooled, but Eagle guard, Ty Groce, began attacking the rim with effective slashing drives that gave EMU a one-two punch in the paint.

CMU was not out of things, and the fans at McGuirk were treated to a familiar sight, namely senior forward David DiLeo going off on a three point barrage that pulled the Chippewas within three with seconds left in the game. Eastern missed some big free throws down the stretch, which exposes the one element of their game that suffers and gave the Chippewas one final shot to tie the game on a last second shot, which just missed.

The Chippewas will look to regroup on Friday against visiting conference leader, Akron, and hope to have Morgan back in the lineup as they try to slay the Zips. Eastern Michigan will face their in-state rival of the week, Western Michigan, at the Convocation Center in Ypsilanti this Saturday.

Morgan & DiLeo Lead Chippewas to Statement Win Over Bowling Green

Central Michigan University (12-8, 5-2) was currently in the MAC West lead after coming alive in recent weeks of conference play. Tuesday night provided the matchup of the week as MAC East leader, Bowling Green (17-5, 8-1), arrived in Mt. Pleasant coming off a huge comeback victory against Buffalo for a showdown with conference title implications on the line. As as been the case this year, CMU shows up at home (improved to 11-1 after Tuesday).

The game also provided CMU with an opportunity to grab a statement win and show that their recent string of victories is not a fluke.

If there was a doubt going into Tuesday that CMU’s success thus far in the MAC was less than legitimate, there can be no doubt after Tuesday night. The Chippewas knew they had to show up in a big way against the Falcons and they did just that.

The Chippewas torched the Falcons in the first half with a relentless attack of three point shots and efficient shots in the paint on the way to a 48-35 halftime lead that was extended on a buzzer beater from downtown by senior forward, David DiLeo, who finished with 26 points on 6 of 8 three point shooting for the night.

Dallas Morgan also assisted in the onslaught with 29 points on an additional 5 three point buckets. The pair were an integral part of setting the game record for three point makes on 12 of 23 shooting.

While the second half seemed to tighten up, Bowling Green was unable to make up the first half deficit, cutting the lead several times to 8 points before runs by the Chippewas pushed it back to double digits, CMU never seemed in danger of letting go of things.

The Chippewas extend their winning streak and improve their record to 13-8 (6-2). The Chippewas head to Buffalo (14-9, 5-5) for another tough contest in a season where they have struggled on the road (2-7).

Rivalry Week Ends with CMU Victory Over WMU

The Greeks & Persians, Frazier & Ali, Red Sox & Yankees… While Central Michigan vs. Western Michigan may not seem like a worthy addition to this list, to those who have ties to either school will certainly disagree.

The triad of Mid-American Conference Michigan schools (Central, Eastern and Western Michigan) have a heated rivalry that dates back a century with the resurrection of Western Michigan University. Eastern Michigan boasts being the oldest of the three schools, founded in 1849, but its cousins have made up for lost time in the century-plus of their existences and we have all benefited from the rivalry that ensued over the decades, though the in-state rivalry didn’t get started on the hardwood until 1975.

In that time, the Broncos have managed a 17-27-1 record in men’s basketball against the Chippewas.

Saturday gave us another great matchup in the rivalry as both teams looked to make moves in Mid-American Conference play.

The Chippewas have struggled mightily on the road this season, going just 1-7 in contests outside the friendly confines of McGuirk Arena in Mt. Pleasant.

On the other end of the court, the Broncos have been largely successful on their home court, going 7-2 at University Arena this season.

The Broncos would be disappointed if they hoped CMU’s homesick blues would carry over into their game on Saturday. From the onset, CMU seemed intent on establishing that this game would be a departure from their road woes and be more indicative of their overall success as of late.

The Chippewas played a physical first half, but Western Michigan was able to keep things from getting out of control for much of the first half. However, CMU proved too much and was able to take a comfortable 7-point lead into halftime, 41-34.

Western Michigan came out of halftime on a mission and a plan at making things competitive down the stretch. They did just that.

Broncos began to drop shots and get the ball into the paint, which in turn, began creating opportunities from behind the arch. WMU used the three ball to pull the game within reach several times in the final minutes, but clutch free throws by the Chippewas kept things from ever feeling in danger of slipping.

And it wasn’t as if WMU didn’t apply pressure. The Broncos rained down threes in the final minutes with startling precision, but the Chippewas unrelenting free throw proficiency sealed the game. The pair of teams each notched 44-points in the half, which carried over the 7-point first half differential and gave the Chippewas a much needed 85-78 road win.

Central Michigan Men Hold On against Ball State

After the first game of the day in which Central Michigan women dazzled the home crowd against Toledo, the men kept things going strong into the evening in their conference matchup with visiting MAC West leader, Ball State.

Trailing the Cardinals by just a game in the division, both teams seemed to be riding different strategies to success in the first half.

Ball State got into the lane early and often on multiple floating layups or jumpers and a great post performance by senior forward Tahjai Teague that was more impressive than his stat line would indicate as several trips to the line came up mostly empty. Central struggled to stop the efficient tendencies of the Cardinals throughout much of the first half.

Central Michigan on the other hand struggled inside the arch for much of the first half, but traded every few buckets with a three point dart that kept things close. CMU ended the half with a 33-27 lead.

The second half opened up as both teams were able to establish the fast break on a few occasions that led to rim crushing dunks. CMU established a firm grip on things midway through the second half, but stalled as they began to allow things to run deep into the shot clock offensively. The strategy did not pay off and momentum began to shift rather quickly back in favor of the Cardinals who went on a 11-3 run that got them as close as two points after appearing to be without any answer for the Chippewas.

Perhaps the biggest difference maker was forcing Ball State to make uncharacteristic mistakes who tallied a shocking 28 turnovers in the game. The Chippewas improve to a tie in the MAC West with Ball State and a 10-1 record at home this season. Dallas Morgan led the Chippewas with 21 points. Tahjai Teague led the Cardinals with 17.

CMU travels on the road to face Miami Ohio for the second time this MAC season after defeating the Redhawks by 11 earlier this month at McGuirk.

Central Michigan Women topple another MAC Giant to maintain 1st Place

If you are waiting for the Central Michigan women to slow down or show their mortality in this tough stretch of opponents, you will have to wait at least a little longer. The Chippewas have faced a grueling schedule of top MAC West opponents in recent weeks and found ways to win them in convincing ways ranging from surprising blowouts to desperate play that only champions can apply to the offhand game in the dog days of January’s basketball schedule. It seems the CMU women are not content to let a single game to escape them the rest of the way as they prepare for another run in March.

Saturday afternoon was no different.

Playing in front of a rowdy packed house at McGuirk arena, the Chippewas met Toledo for an opportunity at extending their winning streak. The home crowd was certainly nervous on more than one occasion, but gritty, cerebral and tenacious play gave the Chippewas another win in the MAC and sent the Toledo Rockets back to Ohio disappointed.

The Rockets didn’t go lightly, either, as a late run had fans on the edge of their seat between pandemonious standing ovations following relentless big plays by the Chippewas. AS things appeared just about ready to be closed out, Mikayla Kelly drove down the right side of the lane and kicked the ball to Maddy Watters in the corner who passed on a three point attempt and drove to the basket, absorbing a hard foul, and putting up a contested shot that bounced and hung on the rim several times before dropping in and sending her to the line.

The crowd went wild and CMU president, Robert O. Davies, was loving every moment of it. So were the ladies of Central Michigan. The held on for another win in the MAC that puts them at 14-4 (6-0). Toledo drops to 9-7 (4-1).

Central Michigan Downs Western Michigan with Huge 4th QTR Comeback

Central Michigan came into University Arena in Kalamazoo, MI riding high after an incredible dominating performance against MAC perennial power, Ball State. The hardwood at Read Fieldhouse has been very friendly to the Broncos as they’ve managed a 5-1 record at home this season and struggled on the road.

Less than a week after CMU’s statement win over the Cardinals, the Chippewas made the trip south and knew they were in for another test against the rival Broncos. Both teams have had great runs so far in the 2019-2020 season and Saturday was a test of which team would grab control of their own destiny going into the back half of the conference schedule.

If the Chippewas thought they were in for another cruise to victory, the Broncos had other plans. Western led most of the way and seemed to be in firm control of things until a late run by the Chippewas eventually overtook the Broncos and put them on the wrong side of the scoreboard for the first time all afternoon.

The Chippewas maintained command of the lead until the final horn in a final minute blitz that stunned fans cheering on the home team.

One thing was made clear on Saturday. The Chippewa’s championship pedigree can manifest in their ability to close out blow out victories without letting off the gas and remain composed in the face of significant opposition under pressure. Both instances provide a glimpse at what years of conference success can do for a team that refuses to become complacent. The feat is even more impressive as the Chippewas are managing their continued success without missing a beat under first year coach, Heather Osterle. The Chippewas will look to continue rolling against in-state rival Eastern Michigan, Toledo and Buffalo to close out their January schedule.

Western Michigan finds themselves facing down a difficult loss that seemed in hand for most of all four quarters against the odds-on favorite to win the MAC for a third straight season. Sitting at 10-6 (3-2) the Broncos have three important games against struggling Bowling Green, Akron and Miami OH in the coming week before facing Ball State on February 1. These games will say a lot about what can be expected the rest of the way for the Broncos.

Central Michigan Throttles Ball State to Take 1st Place in MAC

Not many in attendance or outside the friendly confines of McGuirk arena likely predicted an outcome like what was witnessed on Wednesday night when Ball State traveled to take on Central Michigan in a test of Mid-American Conference Titans.

The top two teams in the MAC over the last several seasons met once again to determine who would gain sole ownership of the conference lead as they make their way into the meat of the conference schedule and many predictions leading into the contest had the Ball State Cardinals as the favorite to do just that over the home team Central Michigan Chippewas.

Ball State has enjoyed several impressive wins over non-conference foes Xavier, New Mexico and Butler, while holding their own in games against Wisconsin and Cincinnati.

The results could not have been further from the pundit predictions.

After the first few minutes, in which both teams seemed to battle in a fairly evenhanded fashion, CMU began to pull away and do so with authority.

The Chippewas got things going with increased defensive pressure that netted several unforced errors by Ball State and Chippewa steals got things going for the Maroon and Gold, who played to a sizable crowd that enjoyed every moment of Chippewa dominance. The Chippewas forced the Cardinals to play at a pace they were clearly uncomfortable playing and continued to force the issue on each ensuing possession.

Things never got close once CMU pulled away and the Chippewas managed to secure the win by playing with an impressive sense of urgency rarely seen by teams maintaining such a large lead so deep into regulation.

First year women’s basketball coach, Heather Osterle, has the Chippewas playing for their third MAC championship in as many years and their championship pedigree showed. The Chippewas did not let their foot off the gas until the final horn sounded, emphasizing the point that they are playing for March and not the end of regulation. The Chippewas closed the game with a convincing 66-39 win that is sure to put the rest of the MAC on notice that fresh faces in the lineup and head coach position have not slowed CMU.

CMU’s desire to build on and improve recent success was evident and on full display as they hope to take some momentum into another tough conference matchup against in-state rival, Western Michigan, on the road in Kalamazoo this Saturday.