MARQUETTE, Mich. – Head men’s basketball coach Dean Ellis always seems to have something up his sleeve when the Wildcats play Michigan Tech. Saturday was no exception, meeting for the second time in less than a month NMU used a seven-point halftime lead (34-27) to hold on to defeat the Huskies 66-62.
With the win the ‘Cats improve to 8-3 overall and 3-3 in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC). MTU falls to 6-5 and 3-3 respectively.
Over the first four minutes of the game the ‘Cats used a 7-0 start to set the tone early. About two minutes later the ‘Cats were up 11-5 after a Marc Renelique jumper which was followed by Austin Rowe’s jumper (13-5). At 10:34 of the half Renelique gave the ‘Cats a 10-point edge (18-8) after a lay-up. MTU had the NMU lead down to five points (20-15) with a little over eight minutes left. Kyle Greene converted a lay-up at 6:18 for a 24-15 NMU lead. The Huskies went on a 10-0 run to take over the lead (25-24) with a little over three minutes left in the half. NMU answered with an 8-0 run of its own for a 32-25 lead with 1:21 left. Three-pointers were made by Greene and Rowe.
The second half the Huskies chipped away at the NMU lead and tied the game at 37-all about four minutes into the half. MTU took a brief lead (39-37) before Tyler Kazmierkoski made both of his free throws and Raymont McElroy canned a jumper (43-39). MTU had a nine-point lead with 5:28 left in the game (60-51). NMU used shooting from Kazmierkoski and Chris Warner to get the score down to 60-58 with 3:41 showing on the clock. MTU still held a 62-61 lead with three minutes left in the game. Warner tied and then gave NMU the lead (63-62) when he sank both of his free throws with 1:52 on the clock. Rowe made a jumper and then made one of his two free throws for the final scoring.
Three starters led the ‘Cats in the scoring column as Greene had 14 points as he was followed by McElroy with 13 and Kazmierkoski’s 12. Fedrick Bowe led MTU with 15 points. Warner had a game-high six rebounds.
NMU ended the game by shooting over 53 percent from the floor on 24-45 (53.3 percent). The ‘Cats were 5-16 from the arc (31.3 percent). Greene led the ‘Cats form the three-point line by going 2-3. NMU was 13-18 from the free throw line (72.2 percent). Rebounds were almost even as the Huskies had two more (30-28). NMU only had four offensive boards for the game.
The ‘Cats have two games at home next week. NMU will face Tiffin on Thursday (Jan. 8) and Ashland on Saturday (Jan. 10).
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Sports Information Director