Kalamazoo Valley hosted Mid Michigan for MCCAA Western Conference basketball Wednesday evening. The Cougar men claimed an overtime battle 85-79 and the Laker women stayed undefeated off a 73-55 victory.
For the KVCC men, it was their first victory over Mid Michigan since the Lakers joined the league for the 2016-17 season. The Cougars also earned their 12th win of the season, getting to 12 for the first time since the 2015-16 campaign. To do it, they had to fight off a Laker rally.
Kalamazoo Valley used a 14-5 run for a nine-point lead midway through the first half. The Cougars led by as many as 12 before going into halftime ahead 41-34. KVCC grew their lead to its largest at 13 points with 6:55 left in the second half at 65-52.
From that point, Mid Michigan went on a 21-6 tear, getting the lead for the first time on a Dre Tuominen three-pointer with 1:09 remaining. Down two, Melvin Frazier drove and scored for the Cougars, tying the game at 73-73 with 12 seconds left. The Lakers couldn’t score on their final possession, sending the game to OT.
Mid Michigan struck first in overtime and led for most of it, going ahead by five at one point. KVCC went back ahead on a JoVaun Jones two-pointer with 30 seconds left at 80-79. The Lakers missed and had to foul Addison Atwater, who split his pair of double bonus free throws. The second shot was tipped out of bounds with possession to the Cougars.
Portage Northern alum Devin Marshall was fouled after the inbound pass and sank both free throws for a two-possession lead, then hit another two free throws for good measure after a steal to seal an 85-79 Cougar win.
Marshall was 7-9 at the line for the night, finishing with 14 points. Melvin Frazier led KVCC with 19 points. Tuominen topped all players with 28, including eight of his team’s nine three-pointers.
The Kalamazoo Valley men move to 12-4 overall with the win and 3-1 in MCCAA Western Conference play. Ahead is a tough home game Saturday afternoon versus #16 Ancilla. Mid Michigan falls to 9-5 and 2-2 in league play ahead of Saturday’s home game with Kellogg.
Although they never led, the Kalamazoo Valley women kept pace with the 10th-ranked Lakers throughout the first half, never trailing by more than seven. The score was 15-12 after the first quarter and 30-24 at halftime.
However, Mid Michigan started the third quarter with 21 unanswered points, eventually winning the frame 30-8. The Cougars righted the ship in the fourth quarter, but the damage was already done.
Kalamazoo Central alum Makenna Wilson topped KVCC with 16 points. Amelia McNutt led all players with 22 points for the Lakers, including a 13-15 mark on free throws.
The win keeps Mid Michigan unbeaten at 14-0 and 4-0 in conference play with a Saturday afternoon tilt ahead with Kellogg. Kalamazoo Valley falls to 7-8 and 1-3 in league play ahead of their Saturday matinee at home versus Ancilla.