Skip to Content, Navigation, or Footer.
The Eastern Echo Sunday, May 19, 2024 | Print Archive
The Eastern Echo

Eastern Michigan vs Ball State

Eagles suffer home opener setback; fall to Detroit Mercy, 68-38

In her first college game, freshman Cali Denson impressively took the lead in scoring for the team.

The Eastern Michigan University women’s basketball team took a significant loss and fell to the Detroit Mercy Titans, 66-38, inside the George Gervin GameAbove Center on Monday, Nov. 6. 

“Detroit was the more physical team tonight, which is incredibly disappointing,” said head coach Fred Castro. “That’s something that we want to consistently bring, and we just didn’t do that tonight.”

Despite a 13-point effort from the bench, EMU could not get things going. Coming off the bench, freshman Cali Denson ended with nine points, leading the Eagles in scoring.

With 11 rebounds and four steals, Kennedi Myles, a senior transfer (Illinois/Marquette), led the Eagles defensively. 

With an average of four offensive rebounds per game, Myles led an Eastern Michigan offense that pulled down 12 offensive rebounds and turned them into seven second-chance points.

The Eagles struggled to get shots falling out of the gate and finished the first quarter down, 20-7.

EMU would then enter halftime down 34-19 as they continued their shooting slump, while also being outrebounded by the Titans. 

“I didn’t think we could shoot it worse than we did the first half. Unfortunately, we didn’t shoot much better in the second half,” Castro said. 

After the break, Detroit Mercy extended its lead even further. Going up to 38-22, with 6:15 remaining in the third, EMU mounted a 5-0 run to cut their deficit to 38-27.

In the fourth quarter, the Titans had increased their lead to 51-29 after counterattacking. 

The Eagles were unable to get much closer as the Titans would put the game out of reach in the final minutes and ultimately lost, 68-38. 

“The first four minutes of the third quarter, I thought I saw a different version of a team that kind of plays like what we need to play like consistently for us to win games,” Castro explained.

The story of the night was Detroit Mercy's hot hand and aggressiveness on the glass as they shot 45.8% from the field while grabbing 56 rebounds to EMU's 25% from the field and only 32 total rebounds. 

The loss marked the sixteenth time that the Eagles have fallen in their season-opening game. 

This will be Castro’s eighth season with the Green and White. The group finished the 2022–2023 season ranked seventh in the Mid-American Conference postseason. In his 20 years as coach, his teams have compiled a 355-253 record (.583 winning percentage), including eight seasons of 20 or more wins. 

Next up, as part of the first leg of the MAC-SBC Challenge, the Eagles will travel to Georgia Southern University on Saturday, Nov. 11, for their first away game of the season. 2 p.m. is the tip-off time as ESPN+ will be streaming it. 

For updates on the EMU women's basketball team, you can visit The Echo's website.