Men's Basketball snap three game losing streak with win over NIU

North Miami senior Ralph Bissainthe dunks against Akron, Tuesday, Jan. 25, in McGuirk Arena.

With one minute remaining in regulation Harrison Henderson found himself seemingly wide open at the top of the key. He decided to take the shot and splash it home, effectively sealing the game for a Chippewa victory.

Northern Illinois came back from a 12-point deficit with three minutes remaining to tie the game at 57-57. But the Chippewas did not waiver, digging their heels into the hardwood and took down the Huskies 69-63.

CMU (3-13, 2-3) was able to get its first win since Dec. 29 amidst seven postponements to improve to 2-3 in the MAC over NIU (5-13, 2-6).

With six first half lead changes it kept things within reach for both squads, but CMU found itself up five at the end of the first half buzzer with a score of 33-28. 

The Chippewas offense began to pick up steam before halftime and the train kept chugging through the second half. While NIU gained momentum in the late stages of the game, CMU was able to remain hot from the field and keep their feet on the floor for defense.

Cameron Healy lined up for the three, the ball soaring over everyone’s head. Ralph Bissainthe was locked in the whole way. The ball bounced off the rim while Bissainthe soared in for a put-back jam to put the Chippewas up 12 in the second half.

Bissainthe had the team highs, with 17 points and nine rebounds. He confirmed his role as the go-to scoring option for the Chippewas in this game. His defensive pressure and offensive prowess was a problem for the Huskies to overcome.

Head coach Tony Barbee and company had CMU run a zone defense for a majority of the first half. This proved to be a successful game plan as they were able to get multiple stops that led to points on the other end. NIU went 1-8 from the three in the first half allowing the Chippewas to remain in the zone.

The blazing speed of Kevin Miller was on full display as he went coast to coast off the inbound blowing past NIU defenders and finishing with an athletic reverse layup to put the Chippewas up by six with 13 minutes left in regulation. Miller tied his season high with seven assists to go along with 14 points and five rebounds.

All 6’11 and 240lbs of Henderson was a matchup nightmare for the Huskies in the paint sparking the offensive with multiple dunks and punishing hooks. He finished the game with 16 points and three steals.

NIU sophomore Keshawn Williams put up the game high 20 points to go along with five rebounds and two assists.

The Chippewas come back home to face the Bowling Green Falcons on Tue. at 7p.m.