YPSILANTI, Mich. — Oh my goodness nieces and nephews in spite of receiving the flu vaccination the dreaded virus hitched a ride with Uncle Mel and the result well simply - the holiday was not so festive.
Eastern Michigan University men’s basketball team traveled into the heart of the state of Alabama but the celebration of welcoming in the New Year in party-style was put on a temporary hold.
Eastern Michigan University could not hold onto a double digit lead against Samford University in front of 661 inside the cozy Pete Hanna Center as the Bulldogs edged out a 55-51 victory over the Eagles.
The Eagles had control of the game and had a grip on the outcome of the contest until late in the second half when Samford senior forward Josh Davis picked the pocket of Eagle swingman Antonio Green and took off toward the Eagles goal and scoring giving the Bulldog’s come back life and putting the nausea inside Eastern Michigan University basketball coach Charles Ramsey stomach.
“It is a learning process if you get up by 17 you got to get up by 19,” Ramsey said after his team won there second game of the season at the Lou Henson Tournament back in December at Oakland University. “ Traveling to Birmingham to Samford it is going to be a tough game. Samford is a good ball club they run the Princeton offense it is going to be one of those solid mental test. That if we can break through will really give us confidence.”
Eastern Michigan University committed and could not overcome 21 turnovers that allowed Samford to score 26 points off of the miscues and Ramsey deploys a lot of players from the bench looking for consistency and an edge but the Eagle bench could only provide just two points.
Eastern Michigan University offense shot 50 percent from the floor and out rebounded the Bulldogs 26-19 and the Eagles were able to get under the basket and into the paint area for 20 points.
Leading the offense for the Eagles senior power forward Brandon Bowdry , he finished the game with 19 points and pulled down six rebounds but Bowdry turn the ball over six times.
“Bowdry is a good player and our game plan was to make him earn all of the points,” Samford University basket ball coach Jimmy Tillette said after the game. “He defiantly earned them and he is a really good player. He finished with 19 points and six rebounds but he averages a double-double that is why we went to a 1-3-1 zone at the end of the game was to keep the ball out of his hands. It was difficult for them to get him the ball and that helped changed the game.”
Ramsey might be feeling a little better about his point guard play especially from Darrell Lampley’ contribution of shooting 6 of 7 for 12 points and seven assist.
The Eagles allowed Samford to score 34 points in the second half and the Bulldogs shot 50 percent from the floor hitting 9 of 18 shots from the floor.
Leading the Bulldogs to victory sophomore forward Gregg Wooten, he finished the game with 13 points shooting 4 of 6 from the floor and getting to the free throw line five times and making four free throws.
“When we changed the defense I think it took them out of their offense rhythm that they had,” Wooten said. “We went to the 1-3-1 and it’s really been something we’ve been working on lately we’re just trying to slow down the rhythm of the other team and that is what happened today.”
Eastern Michigan University did not miss a free throw but of course with just three trips to the charity strip it might be a bit misleading. Samford were led to the free throw line 13 times and the Bulldogs made 12 free throws that aided them with the come back win.
Eastern Michigan University will finished the non-conference portion of the schedule Tuesday night at the Convocation Center by hosting Ferris State University, the game is scheduled to tip off at 7 p.m.
After a couple of days of rest and steamy hot chicken noodle soup and with plenty of football to watch Uncle Mel will be as good as new but for the Eagles they continue to look for some kind of medicine to make the season go down easier.
About the Author
Written by Mel Suiter
Graduated from Eastern Michigan University in 2002 and have been working as a beat writer for The Ypsilanti Courier covering Eastern Michigan University football and men's basketball during my school career and after graduation. I like the Mid-American Conference and the rest of the mid-major conferences.