PREVIEW: Ball State men's basketball vs. Toledo
With two regular season games left, Ball State men's basketball (18-11, 9-7 MAC) is on the road to compete against the Mid-American Conference West Division's second-place team in the Toledo Rockets (15-15, 8-8) on Tuesday.
This is the second meeting between the Cardinals and the Rockets. Ball State narrowly pulled out an 81-80 victory on Jan. 31 behind 26 points from sophomore guard Tayler Persons.
Toledo holds a 4-3 record since last playing Ball State. In that stretch the Rockets secured a 78-58 win over Kent State on Feb. 11 and lost to Western Michigan 61-56 on Feb. 21.
Ball State stats:
Field goal percentage: 46.8
Field goal percentage defense: 41.4
Rebounding margin: +3.3
Leading scorer: Tayler Persons
Field goal percentage: 48.4
Field goal percentage defense: 46.5
Rebounding margin: +3.5
Leading scorer: Johnathon Williams — 19.9
Ball State lost to Kent State in the first conference game of the season and the Cardinals are coming of an 80-55 thrashing from Western Michigan on Feb. 25.
Both Ball State and Toledo feed from their offensive play.
Ranking second and averaging 80.1 points per game, Toledo relies on senior guard Johnathon Williams who averages 19.8 points per game and 3.2 assists.
Another force for Toledo is senior forward Steve Taylor Jr., who averages 15.7 points per game and 12.4 rebounds to lead the MAC with the next closest player being two rebounds away.
Ball State will be looking to get out and run against Toledo. The Cardinals rank 25th in the nation for team possessions per game and the Rockets rank 81st.
The Cardinals had six fast break points to Toledo's zero last game.
In a 1-point victory in last outing against Toledo, the Rockets out shot Ball State from 3-point land and the charity stripe with the Cardinals only edging them out 43.7 percent from the field compared to 43.3 percent.
Only two regular seasons remain for a chance for each teams to improve their MAC seeding.
Tipoff is set for 7 p.m. at Savage Arena in Toledo, Ohio.