Miami Picks Up Massive MAC Win vs. Central Michigan

By: Jack Mueller

The RedHawks picked up a critical win in their pursuit of the MAC Tournament on Saturday, defeating Central Michigan 88-60 at Millett Hall. The weekend win was a massive confidence boost after a disappointing loss against Western Michigan on tuesday.


“Our guys responded the right way.” said head coach Travis Steele. “We got a lot of great performances out of everybody.”


Miami’s scoring output was their highest since December 29th against Wilberforce, and their highest points total in MAC play this season. Five RedHawks ended the day with double-digits points totals, a testament to the depth that the ‘Hawks have displayed all season. 


“It was a lot of fun, we’ve really started to click.” said transfer guard Bradley Dean. Dean ended the game with a season high 20 points on 71% from the field. He also hit three shots from behind the arc, showcasing his deep offensive skill set. Freshmen Evan Ipsaro and Reece Potter finished with 15 each on a combined 61% shooting. Ipsaro’s scoring total was his most since the aforementioned Wilberforce matchup, where he had 17. 


Central Michigan came into the game on a roll, riding a three game win streak and sitting in a top-3 spot in the MAC. The Chippewas were dominant in the first meeting between the two teams, walking away with a 71-55 victory, however history would not repeat itself on saturday. 


“I think we’re one of the most dangerous teams in the league” said Steele. "We've shown we can beat anybody.”


Two threes by Potter stretched Miami’s lead to eleven just seven minutes into the game, a double digit lead the RedHawks would maintain for the duration of the game. By the time there were three minutes remaining in the half, Miami had already built a twenty point lead. The RedHawks could have been expected to ease off the gas pedal slightly after such a commanding lead, but they never did. 


“We have to act like with every possession, a trip to Cleveland is on the line.” said Steele “We control our own narrative now.”


The RedHawks will travel to Bowling Green on Tuesday to face the Falcons in another MAC matchup. The home team sits one game above Miami in the MAC standings, and a Miami win would all but guarantee a spot in the MAC tournament in a few weeks. The Falcons stole the first game at Millett 78-73, so the RedHawks will go into the midweek matchup looking for revenge.

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