December 31, 2005
Eastern Michigan Post Game Notes
Dec. 30, 2005
Box Score |
With the 76-70 win, Northern Colorado improves to 1-14 on the season while Eastern Michigan falls to 3-5.
The win snapped a 17-game losing streak for the Bears dating back to last season. The team's last win came on Feb. 22, 2005 against Colorado College (83-67). Before the victory, Northern Colorado had been one of nine winless Division I teams.
Northern Colorado and Eastern Michigan are now tied 1-1 in the all-time series. UNC head coach Craig Rasmuson served as an assistant coach at Eastern Michigan in 1990-91, when the Eagles went to the NCAA Sweet 16.
The game was the 15th of the season for the Bears, the most of any Division I team in the country so far this season.
The Bears used a starting lineup of Matt Kline, Sean Taibi, Erik Olson, Dwayne Birden and Cory Lowe for the first time this season. It was the eighth different lineup the Bears have used this season.
Eastern Michigan scored the first four points of the season and were up by as many as six points (23-17) in the first half. But Northern Colorado went on an 11-0 run over the next 3:14 to grab a 28-23 lead. The Bears would not trail again. Taibi had seven points in the run and the run was capped with an explosion fast break dunk by Birden.
The Bears led 35-33 at halftime, only the second time this season they had led at the break (the other was Montana State). Taibi led the Bears with 13 points at the break, while Carlos Medlock had 12 to lead EMU.
Northern Colorado opened the second half by scoring the first seven points and overall spurted out on an 11-2 run to build a 46-35 lead with 14:43 remaining.
The 11-point lead (46-35) was the first time this season the Bears had led by double digits. The squad's previous high lead of the season was nine points against Montana State.
UNC led by 15 points (55-40) at the 10:43 mark on a layup by Kirk Archibeque. Northern Colorado led by 15 on several occasions until taking a 16-point lead (64-48) with 6:28 to play on a pair of free throws by Lowe.
Eastern Michigan made up some ground late, trimming the lead below double digits for the first time since early in the half. The six points at the buzzer was the closest EMU had been since 13 seconds into the second half. Northern Colorado led by eight or more points for the final 15 minutes of the game.
EMU was led by 21 points and 10 rebounds from John Bowler. Medlock added 20.
Taibi led the team with 21 points, tying a season-high (also set against Loyola Marymount). He hit on 7-of-11 shots and 3-of-5 from 3-point range in 38 minutes of play. He leads the team with 38 3-pointers, which is only two off the national lead (shared by J.J. Redick and Gerry McNamara).
Archibeque scored 17 points, hitting on 8-of-13 shots while also grabbing eight rebounds. He has scored in double figures in 9 of his last 10 games. He is hitting 51-of-96 (53.1%) from the field in his last 10 games.
Birden scored 11 points, snapping a streak of 10 games of not scoring in double figures. He had scored only 15 total points in his last six games. He was credited for playing 40 minutes, coming out of the game for only one 20 second stretch.
Kline scored nine points and dished out nine assists, one off his career-high (set earlier this season against Oral Roberts). He has 16 assists in his last two games and 19 in his last two games. He leads the team with 4.1 assists/game.
Lowe scored 10 points, the second time this season he has scored in double figures. He hit on 3-of-4 shots and was a perfect 4-for-4 from the free throw line. He was hitting only 42.9% (9-of-21) from the free throw line entering the game.
Olson had an all-around good game, scoring six points, grabbing eight rebounds, dishing out two assists, making three steals and blocking two shots in 31 minutes. Olson leads the team with 21 steals and 11 blocks on the season.
Northern Colorado had two players (Olson and Lowe) foul out and were limited by injuries that kept Michael Gordy and Thanasi Panagiotakopoulos out of the lineup.
The 76 points by the Bears was their second-highest output of the year (78 against Northern Arizona was the most). The 17 free throws made equaled a season-high (also done vs. Lipscomb).
The Bears 10 turnovers this season were a season-low.
Northern Colorado returns to action on Sunday, January 1 when they play at Northwestern (12 p.m. MT). The game can be heard on 1310 KFKA, starting on a delayed basis at 1 p.m. MT.