Saturday, February 4, 2023

Middle Tennessee crashes the glass in 62-58 victory

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Behind arguably Tyler Millin’s best performance as a Blue Raider, Middle Tennessee men’s basketball (12-7, 5-3 C-USA) used offensive rebounding and timely baskets to defeat Charlotte (12-7, 3-5 C-USA) 62-58 in the Murphy Center. 

Shots were not falling early for the Blue Raiders mainly because of Charlotte’s pack line defense that is designed to take away the offense’s driving angles. MTSU’s athletes could not find their way to the rim so the Blue Raiders had to rely on its offensive rebounding. 

MTSU scored 12 points off nine offensive rebounds in the first half but trailed 27-26 at the break. Middle Tennessee scored 21 points off of 21 Charlotte turnovers with its ability to run in transition against Charlotte’s defense that is designed to take away transition opportunities. 

“I told our team after the game they’re not always going to be pretty,” Middle Tennessee head coach Nick McDevitt said. “I thought it was a slugfest and both teams were trying to find a rhythm. There were 38 combined turnovers, we forced 21, they forced us into 17. It wasn’t offensively, I’m sure, pleasing to the eye, but sometimes you’ve got to find a way to win.”

Tyler Millin scored 12 points, including the game-winning 3-pointer, and grabbed eight rebounds. Millin was a huge energy boost off the bench in the first half when Middle Tennessee was not getting many shots to fall. Millin used his athleticism and length to finish at the rim and give the Blue Raiders a spark. 

Camryn Weston led MTSU with 14 points and knocked down two free throws to ice the game late. Weston also tallied five rebounds and four assists.

Middle Tennessee packs its bags and takes the road trip to Ruston, LA to face Louisiana Tech on Saturday for its first matchup with the Bulldogs.

Calvin White is the sports editor for MTSU Sidelines. If you have any information for a story, you can contact him at wcwhite2002@gmail.com

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