The Eastern Michigan Eagles Men’s basketball team (2-3, 0-0 MAC) knocked off Western Illinois University (4-2, 0-0 Summit League), 72-68, in a back and forth shootout to earn their second win of the season.
The Eagles garnered another home win under first-year Head Coach Stan Heath at the Convocation Center on Wednesday, Nov. 24.
The first half of the game was a tight defensive display, neither team held more than a three-point lead. The Eagles shot just 35% from the field and the Leathernecks shot 23%. Western Illinois converted their free throw opportunities, shooting 75% compared to the Eagles 16%.
Entering the second half, the Eagles found their spark and turned around their poor shooting efforts. The Eagles shot 61.5% from the field and made 11-13 (84%) from the free-throw line.
The Eagles jumped out to an eight point lead, 52-44, over Western Illinois in the second half. Not long after, the Leathernecks fought back to even the score, 62-62. Momentum shifted back and forth for the last 4 minutes. Game script kept the Eagles at the free-throw line with a lead late in the game. Junior guard Bryce McBride knocked down four free-throws to seal the victory for Eastern Michigan, 72-68.
The victory on Wednesday marks the Eagles' 10th victory over the Leathernecks in the all-time series.
Senior Monty Scott led the Eagles with 16 points and freshman Noah Farrakhan followed with 14 points. Senior captain Darion Spottsville added 9 points and strong bench performances combined for 22 points.
The win against the Leathernecks recorded Noah Farrakhan’s fifth-straight game reaching double-digits in points. Monty Scott and Bryce McBride recorded their fourth-straight game of double-digits.
On the defensive end, senior Nate Scott led the team with 7 rebounds to go along with one block and a steal. Spottsville added 5 rebounds and 2 steals, one of those steals sealing the win for the Eagles during the final seconds.
The Eagles face DePaul University on the road in the Windy City for the conclusion of the DePaul Blue Demon Classic. The matchup will be held at Wintrust Arena on Sunday, Nov. 28. The contest is scheduled to begin at 2 p.m. ET and will be broadcast on FS1.
For more information on the men’s basketball team, you can visit EMUEagles.com.