Junior point guard Crystal Bradford recorded her first career triple-double Sunday afternoon to help the Central Michigan women’s basketball team defeat Buffalo, 82-68.
Bradford is the fourth player in CMU basketball history to record such a feat, scoring 19 points with 16 rebounds and 11 assists.
“We have to stay hungry to keep winning; that’s always what I’m trying to do,” Bradford said. “We played well as a team and I had an opportunity to make some things happen for us. It was a good win.”
Bradford was not the only bright spot for the Chippewas. The team shot 47 percent from the floor in the first half and went 6-of-16 from behind the arc as they raced out to a 41-30 first-half lead.
Head coach Sue Guevara said winning conference games on the road is essential to her team’s success.
“You have to win big games like these if you want to be one of the higher seeds come (Mid-American Conference) tournament time,” Guevara said. “Crystal was hollering at other players to take shots after she would pass the ball to them. We played well as a team tonight. This was a good win to get.”
Buffalo (7-7, 0-3 MAC) junior Kristen Sharkey went 6-of-11 and had eight rebounds. The Bulls were able to hold the lead twice for a total of three minutes in the early stages of the game. Buffalo played three of its starters for the entire first half.
For CMU, Bradford was one of four players to finish in double figures.
The second half is when the Chippewas (6-7, 3-0 MAC) really came to life. With 18:06 left in the game and a 10-point lead, CMU went on a 16-4 run in a span of eight minutes.
Bradford nabbed 12 of her 16 rebounds in the second half. CMU senior Taylor Johnson came off the bench and went 2-of-3 from 3-point range, and junior Jas’Mine Bracey shot 57 percent from the floor with seven rebounds. Bracey finished the game with 16 points.
With the win, the Chippewas top the MAC West standings with a 3-0 record and join Bowling Green as the only two teams undefeated in conference play. CMU and the Falcons play Saturday, but not before the team hosts Northern Illinois at 7 p.m. at McGuirk Arena.