The East Central University men’s basketball team dropped a Great American Conference road game at Northwestern Oklahoma State University, 85-101, at Percefull Fieldhouse. The game was the first meeting between the two teams in 15 years.
The Tigers (5-8, 2-5 GAC) were led by junior Colby Carr, who earned his fourth-straight double-double of the season on 17 points and 11 rebounds. Carr was one of four ECU players in double-digits in the scoring column. Junior Miles Mitchell tallied a season-best 12 points, while fellow junior Chris Fisher garnered 13 and junior Henry Pwono added 11 points.
The game started out close in the opening two minutes. The Rangers were the first to garner a run to pull head by more than three points, using a 7-0 run to go up 5-11. ECU countered with a 5-1 run to cut the deficit to two, but another 9-0 run by Northwestern put them up by 11 (10-21), with 12:15 left to play.
The Tigers trailed for the next five minutes before going on a 10-1 run to force a 26-all tie. The teams traded 5-0 runs to see the scoreboard knotted at 31 again. ECU then stepped up its game and went on a 12-2 run to take a 38-33 lead, with 3:45 left to play in the first half. The Tigers kept the advantage through the rest of the half and went into the locker room with a 45-41 advantage.
ECU kept its four point lead for the first 2:30 minutes of the second half before Northwestern went on a 6-0 run in a 1:30 to take a 49-51 advantage. The teams then traded shots and points over the next five minutes and ECU was up 64-60, with 10:55 left, when the Rangers went on another 6-0 run to regain the lead. The Tigers tied the game at 68, but were never able to gain an advantage.
The teams traded points over the next five minutes, but Northwestern went on an 11-0 run over a two-minute span to take control of the scoreboard for the rest of the game and earned an 85-101 win.
The game came down to overall shooting and free-throw shooting percentages. The Rangers went 33-of-63 (52.4%) from the field, while the Tigers shot 45.3% (29-of-64) from the floor. Northwestern also earned a 30-of-42 (71.4%) to 15-of-25 (60.0%) free-throw advantage. ECU did have a strong night from beyond the arc, hitting 12-of-20 triples (60%) and holding the Rangers to 33.3% (5-of-15).
The Tigers will remain on the road for their next outing, as they travel to Weatherford, Okla., to face Southwestern Oklahoma State, Saturday, Jan. 12 at 4 p.m.