MARQUETTE, Mich. – The Northern Michigan University men’s basketball team kept its record perfect at 4-0 with an 88-67 win over the visiting Finlandia University Lions Monday night at the Berry Events Center. NMU held a 13-point lead at the half (44-31) while shooting a little over 48 percent (18-37). Finlandia is now 0-4 on the season.
The Wildcats got off to a bit of a slow start, but went on an 8-2 run to take over the lead (13-7). Chris Warner accounted for six of the eight points. The Lions did cut the NMU lead to one point at 13-12 (12:17) before back-to-back baskets by Warner and Kyle Greene gave the ‘Cats a 17-12 cushion.
With NMU holding onto a 25-19 lead the ‘Cats ran off a 12-4 run to take a 37-23 lead with 3:47 left before the half. Tyler Kazmierkoski scored the final six points of the run. The final two minutes of the half the ‘Cats shut down the Lions as Raymont McElroy hit a triple and Greene converted a jumper.
The second half saw the ‘Cats hold a double-digit lead for the 20 minutes. About four plus minutes into the half the ‘Cats had a 20-point lead at 56-36 when McElroy made a jumper. When Eric Sirrine made a lay-up with less than eight minutes left in the game the ‘Cats now had a 30-point lead (78-48), which would be its largest lead of the game.
Four of the five starters were in double-figures. Leading the way was Marc Renelique with 17 points; he was followed by McElroy (16), Kazmierkoski (14) and Warner (12). Greene off the bench had a game-high nine rebounds. Tyler Gordon led the Lions with 21 points and seven rebounds. McElroy added five assists and three steals in the win.
NMU shot a little under 50 percent for the game from the floor (35-71). Three of NMU’s eight three-pointer went to Renelique as NMU was 8-31 from the three-point line (25.8 percent). The ‘Cats were 10-16 from the charity stripe (62.5 percent). Rebounds were in favor of the home team with a 48-36 count.
The ‘Cats will play its next three games away from the Berry Events Center. NMU will play at Northwood (Dec. 4), Wayne State (Dec. 6) and Michigan Tech (Dec. 13).
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Sports Information Director