UNIVERSITY CENTER -- The Cardinal men's basketball team hosted the first-place team in the GLIAC South Division on Thursday (1/18) night in the Ashland University Eagles. SVSU, paced by a huge second half and career performance from Mike Wells Jr., outlasted the Eagles and gave the visitors their first loss since December 2nd by a count of 72-66.
Wells was stellar in the contest, recording a career-high 35 points in the victory with 31 of those coming in a second half performance where he went 10-of-14 from the floor, 5-of-5 from beyond the arc and 6-of-6 from the free throw line.
After the visitors took the early lead, SVSU grabbed the edge and posted its highest lead of the opening half with the score at 13-8 and 13:08 showing on the clock.
Ashland recouped that advantage and would eventually break away from the sixth tie of the half (26-26) to push into the halftime break leading by a score of 34-28.
The Eagles led by their game-high of eight points (36-28) after the opening bucket of the second half with 17:59 to play. That lead would slowly dwindle away, however, as a DJ Hoskins layup knotted the score at 40-40 with 11:39 to go and Liam Evans connected on a jumper to give the Cards a 42-20 lead.
After the ninth tie of the contest at 48-48, Evans would put the home team up two points again with 7:36 showing after another good jumper.
From there, Wells took over the for the Cardinals. He went on a string of 21 straight points for Saginaw Valley, beginning from the 7:02 point on the clock all the way until there were just 12 ticks to play and the Cards led 71-66. The home team would close-out for the victory over the Eagles by the final margin of 72-66.
Inside the Boxscore
- Wells was named the Meijer "Player of the Game" after his career-high 35 points, adding five rebounds and four assists.
- James Toohey had 12 points with a game-high six boards and four assists.
- Evans added a dozen points as well, also grabbing a game-high six rebounds and two helpers.
- DJ Hoskins also had a game-high six boards, adding seven points and a pair of steals.
- SVSU posted a narrow 33-30 edge on the glass and had six bench points compared to zero for Ashland.
- The Eagles posted a 34-30 advantage in points in the paint.
Postgame Interview - Mike Wells
Saginaw Valley continues on at home for a Saturday (1/20) matchup with Tiffin University. Tip-off is set for 3:00 p.m. at O'Neill Arena. The Dragons fell on the road at Northwood by a final score of 92-81 on Thursday.
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