Senior forward Bo Calhoun keeps the ball away from a Kent State player during the game against Kent State on Jan. 19 at Worthen Arena. DN PHOTO BREANNA DAUGHERTY
Unable to make buzzer-beater, Ball State falls 72-69
Trailing by as many as 7 in the second half to Ohio, the Ball State men's basketball team had one last chance with the clock winding down as redshirt junior Ryan Weber missed a 3-point attempt at the buzzer as the Cardinals lost, 72-69.
The Cardinals have won four out of their six Mid-American Conference games in second-half comeback fashion.
From the field, Ball State shot 51.9 percent, but only converted on 57 percent from the free-throw line (8-14) and made only five 3-pointers.
“We had a tough game shooting the basketball, combined from the 3-point line and free-throw line,” head coach James Whitford said. “We still could have won the game if we defended against these guys well enough for the course of 40 minutes.”
In Ball State's previous game, it made 15 3-pointers on its way to the overtime victory over Western Michigan.
Ohio’s junior forward Antonio Campbell and redshirt junior forward Kenny Kaminski combined for 46 points on the night. Campbell was 2-2 from beyond the arc.
“Campbell is a load, and for whatever reason, he makes every 3 he shoots against us, but that didn’t bother me as much as ... Kaminski’s 20 points,” Whitford said. “There was too many defense mistakes, particularly on [Kaminski], and that was disappointing. I thought [Kaminski] was the difference.”
The lead changed eight times throughout the course of the game, but Ball State was incapable of holding off the Kaminski's shooting attack. He made a 25-foot 3-pointer with one minute left to give Ohio a 70-67 lead, onward to victory.
“They made a lot of tough shots at the end; we just didn’t get the stops when we needed them,”senior forward Bo Calhoun said.
Calhoun finished the night with a double-double, posting 10 rebounds and 12 points. Junior forward Franko House led the way for Ball State in terms of scoring with 13 points, four rebounds and two assists.
With Central Michigan University’s 71-56 loss to Eastern Michigan on Feb. 9, Ball State stays tied atop the MAC West Division.
Whitford said he doesn't feel the pressures of being in first place.
“I don’t think it is pressure, but it is excitement. We deal with pressure in a lot of different ways, but what I say to the team every game is we play to win," Whitford said.
Ball State and Central Michigan share a 6-5 conference record. As they inch closer to tournament play, every win is crucial for seeding purposes. The two teams are set to face each other at 4:30 p.m. Feb. 13.