One of the hottest teams in the country, Central Michigan, added two more comeback wins last week and the Chippewas have now won the last five games when trailing in the fourth quarter.
The Chippewas, 16-4 overall and 9-0 in the Mid-American Conference, scored a pair of overtime wins last week, first at Buffalo, winning 98-93 in two overtimes. Then they added a 92-90 overtime victory at home over Ohio that moved Central Michigan 3.5 games in front in the West Division of the MAC, plus an overall three-game lead over Ohio in the league standings.
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In a battle of MAC division leaders on Saturday, Central Michigan prevailed over Ohio as 6-1 junior forward Kyra Bussell led the way with a career-high 33 points on 15-of-20 shooting. Trailing 81-80 with 11 seconds left in regulation, Micaela Kelly was fouled on a drive to the hoop with less than two seconds left. She was slow to get up after the contact and was replaced by Kalle Martinez, who split the two free throws to send the game to extra time. Molly Davis drilled her third 3-pointer of the game with 2:41 remaining in overtime, giving the Chippewas an 87-85 lead they would not surrender. Trailing by two, Ohio failed to convert on a last-second inbound attempt and the Chippewas managed to escape with the comeback victory.
On Jan. 29 in the win over Buffalo, Davis tied her career high with 28 points and Kelly recorded her first-career triple-double with 14 points, a career-high 10 rebounds and 10 assists as Central Michigan scored the key road win. The Chippewas drilled 12 3-pointers, including a half-court shot by Davis to beat the third-quarter buzzer. Bussell demolished her previous career-high of 11 rebounds with 17. She scored 15 points for her third double-double of the season.
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Included in Central Michigan’s 16 wins so far this season are a one-point, 81-80 win over Atlantic 10 Conference-leading Dayton back on Nov. 21, a two-point 73-71 win at Ohio on Jan. 8, two five-point wins over South Dakota State and Akron and the two overtime victories last week.
Winners of nine straight games, Central Michigan returns to action on Feb. 5 when it hosts Northern Illinois.