CANTON, Ohio – Northern Michigan University men’s basketball (4-4, 2-0 GLIAC) was able to sweep their opening weekend of GLIAC play with a 68-65 victory over Malone. The Wildcats shot well in the game going 25-41 (.610) from the field including 5-10 (.500) from beyond the arc in the victory. The NMU bench would outscore the Pioneer bench 41-34.
Northern Michigan came out of the gates shooting hot scoring 14 of the first 17 points to give them an early 14-3 lead with 12:22 still to play in the first half. Senior forward Chavis Mattison hit a pair of free throws to give the Wildcats their largest lead of the game at a 31-18 score with 4:48 remaining in the half. Malone would have an answer at the end of the half finishing on a 12-2 run to cut the NMU lead down to three at 33-30 heading into the locker room.
NMU finished the half shooting 13-22 from the field (.591) and 4-7 (.571) from three-point range. Sophomore guard Marcus Hall paced the Wildcats with a game-high 10 points in the opening half.
The opening minutes saw the teams go back and forth that saw five ties in the first five minutes eventually leading to a 40-40 score. NMU then went on a 12-3 run to take a comfortable 52-43 lead with 11:24 left to play. Freshman guard Jordan Perez led the way during the streak with six points.
Malone would cut the NMU lead down to two at 57-55 with 6:37 in the game before the Wildcats used an 8-0 run to extend the lead back out to double-digits at 65-55 with 1:18 left on the clock. Northern Michigan would be able to cruise in the final minute to the victory. A Malone three-point basket at the buzzer set the final score at 68-65.
Freshman forward Alex Sorenson and Mattison each scored eight points off the bench in the second half to lead Northern Michigan as they shot 12-19 (.632) from the field.
Five different Wildcats finished the game in double-figures led by Mattison and Hall who each scored a game-high 14 points. Sorenson followed right behind with 13, while junior guard Terry Nash and Perez chipped in 11 and 10, respectively.
Mattison was able to record a double-double in the win pulling down a game-high 10 rebounds.
Northern Michigan returns home next weekend when they host Findlay Saturday, December 13 at 3 p.m. and Wayne State Monday, December 15th at 5 p.m.
(Information Courtesy of NMU Athletics)