Men’s basketball’s streak ended

By Steve Shonder

For the fourth straight game, men’s basketball found itself down by double digits, but it was unable to complete the comeback as it was defeated by Western Michigan, 74-71, Sunday at the Convocation Center.

Guard David Brown was huge for the Broncos, scoring a game-high 26 points while shooting 9-14 from the field and hitting five 3-pointers.

The Broncos came out of halftime and went on a 26-14 run to take a 63-47 lead with 12:05 remaining in the second half. During that stretch, Western Michigan went 10-12 from the field while hitting three 3-pointers.

“We had a great stretch in the second half, which we needed every bit of as it turned out down the stretch,” said WMU coach Steve Hawkins. “We knew Northern wasn’t going to give up. They’ve won three in a row; they … had double-digit deficits in those games and were able to come back.”

Guard Travon Baker drilled a 3-pointer that sparked a 9-1 run for the Huskies. Baker scored all nine points to cut the Broncos’ lead to 64-56 to play in the game.

The Broncos extended their lead back to 70-58, but the Huskies made another surge to cut the lead down to 70-67 with 2:20 left to play.

Trailing by four with a minute left in the game, wing Darrell Bowie made a steal and got the ball to guard Aaron Armstead, who converted a layup on the fast break to make it a two-point game with 52 seconds left.

The Huskies fouled Brown, who split a pair of free throws to push the Broncos’ lead back to three, 74-71, with 13 seconds left.

Out of a timeout, Baker got a clean look at a three to tie the game, but it wouldn’t go down for the sophomore as the Broncos held on to win.

“We said we were going to get the ball to Travon Baker, and I thought they were going to come out and foul,” said coach Mark Montgomery. “So maybe I read into it a little bit too much because it’s a situation if they foul, we go to the foul line, there becomes less time on the clock, but I thought we had a clean look. He’s made that shot before.”

The Huskies had no answer for Brown as he scored a game-high 26 points while shooting 9-14 from the field and hitting five 3-pointers.

“I thought both teams came out and played hard, but credit David Brown,” Montgomery said. “I thought I was watching a NBA game watching him make shot after shot.”

Forward Shayne Whittington made a big impact down low for the Broncos as he scored 15 points, as well.

The Huskies nearly had five players score in double figures as center Jordan Threloff led the way with 16 points, Armstead poured in 14, Baker scored 12 and Bowie added 11 points. Forward Aksel Bolin added nine.