Freshman Trey Moses attempts to make a layup during the game against New Orleans on Dec. 5 Worthen Arena. DN PHOTO KORINA VALENZUELA
Men's basketball bench provides spark in 6th straight win
Ball State men’s basketball was able to win its sixth straight game behind the effort of a pair of players coming off of the bench.
Senior guard Jeremiah Davis and sophomore guard Jeremie Tyler led the Cardinals' scoring effort with 13 and 11 points, respectively.
Nine of Tyler’s points in the game came from beyond the 3-point arc, the most of any other Cardinal on the day.
Tyler played his best statistical game of the season against New Orleans, making new single-game highs in points and 3-pointers made.
“In the beginning of the year, I wasn’t shooting too well,” Tyler said. “This game, I was really focused in on knocking down shots — every time I felt like I had a good shot, I took it.”
The case was similar for Davis, who finished the game going 6-7 from the field. Whether it was pull-up jumpers, floaters in the paint or easy layups from a blown Privateer coverage, Davis converted.
Ball State was down early on in the game, and the competition was something head coach James Whitford knew was going to be there heading into the game on Dec. 5.
“This is a team that had gone to Bradley pretty handily and lost to a pretty good Tulane team by just 2 points two nights ago,” Whitford said. “So we thought we’d be in for a tough fight, and we were.”
Whitford credits the defensive effort in the eventual 66-52 victory.
“We won the game because we were outstanding on defense, especially when it mattered most.” Whitford said.
The Cardinals (7-2) finished the game with 10 steals for the second straight time and recorded five blocks.
The defensive charge was led by senior forward Bo Calhoun, who had a career-tying three steals, two blocks and 12 rebounds, 10 of which were on the defensive side of the floor. The senior captain's defensive effort negated his 1-8 day from the floor and only 4 total points scored
Freshman center Trey Moses recorded two blocks in his 19 minutes of action. Moses also chipped in four points and five rebounds.
“In practice, I’m always telling [Moses], ‘Dunk it, dunk it, dunk it,'” junior guard Naiel Smith said.
Dunk it he did, scoring his first career dunk off of one of Smith’s three assists on the night.
Junior Franko House finished the game with 10 points and eight rebounds. One of the team captains, he said he has wanted Moses to be “more aggressive” and “more explosive.”
“We definitely look for [dunks] from all our bigs,” House said.
Ball State’s bench provided 32 points in the victory. The Cardinals will have a week of rest before hosting Pepperdine on Dec. 12 at Worthen Arena.