OXFORD, OH - The University at Buffalo men's basketball
team dropped its regular season finale to Miami (OH), 73-62, on
Thursday evening at Millet Hall. Sophomore Mitchell Watt scored a
career-high 17 points in the Bulls' fall.
Mitchell Watt For the most of the first half, the Bulls (17-11, 9-7 MAC) held the advantage. Leading the Bulls' first half offensive attack were Watt and senior Max Boudreau. Watt went on a first half tear, scoring nine straight with Boudreau adding eight in the first half.
With less than three minutes remaining, the RedHawks (13-17, 9-7 MAC) managed to capture a 27-25 lead only to see senior Rodney Pierce tie the contest just five seconds later off a pair of free throws. At the end of the half, Miami's Julian Mavunga converted on a pair of free throws to give the RedHawks a 33-29 lead at the break.
To begin the second half, the Bulls managed to trim back Miami's lead to two, 35-33. However, the RedHawks managed to extend their lead to 16 off an 11-0 run over 3:58 to take a 56-40 lead at the 8:48 mark.
In the time remaining, the Bulls tried to cut into the RedHawks' lead with Miami sustaining its edge for a 73-62 victory.
Watt led the Bulls with a career-high 17 points and tying a
career-high six rebounds. Senior Calvin Bettspulled in 12 boards.
Pierce converted seven straight free throws in the second half,
scoring 16 points while tying Watt with six rebounds.
The RedHawks were led by Mavunga and Kenny Hayes each finishing with 17 points.
For the contest, the RedHawks shot 50 percent from the field as the Bulls shot 36 percent.
"We didn't just struggle shooting, we didn't defend on the perimeter either. We were completely listless and the energy was not there." said head coach Reggie Witherspoon. "What they did in limiting from the perimeter, opened opportunities inside but if we don't have the energy to defend, it doesn't help our efforts."
The Bulls' journey in the 2010 MAC Tournament will be decided in the outcome of Friday's Kent State-Akron contest at Akron. If Akron wins, the Bulls will receive a first-round bye as the fourth seed. If Kent State wins, the Bulls will enter as the fifth seed and will host Toledo on Sunday, March 7 at 2:00 pm.