UNIVERSITY CENTER, Mich. -- The Saginaw Valley State University men's basketball team defeated the Wayne State Warriors 74-68. Darnell Hoskins Jr. scored 14 points for the Cardinals in the win over the Warriors and surpassed 1,000 career points. With the win SVSU improves to 16-11 overall and 10-9 in conference play while Wayne State falls to 7-16 overall and 4-15 in the GLIAC.
The first half of play was evenly matched through the first six minutes of play as the Cardinals and Warriors were knotted 14 all. The Cardinals went on to take the lead as Hoskins stole the ball and found Delano Smith who dropped in a two-point basket to put SVSU up 27-22. SVSU would force the Warriors to make some mistakes offensively that ultimately led to the Cardinals holding a 40-32 lead over the Warriors at halftime.
The Cardinals had three players in double digit scoring at the half including Hoskins, Malik Ellison, and Myles Belyeu who scored 11, 12, and 10 points respectively. The Cardinal defense did a great job limiting opportunities for the Warriors and held them to 35.7% shooting from the floor in the first half.
The second half opened with back-and-forth scoring between the Cardinals and Warriors as the Cardinals held an eight point lead through the first six minutes of play. The swinging point of the second half came as Ellison and James Toohey hit back-to-back three-pointers extending the Cardinals lead to double digits holding a 56-46 edge. The Cardinals would lead by as many as 14 points in the second half but Wayne State fought back in the final minutes to come within five points of the Cardinals. The last minute effort was too little too late as SVSU closed the game on a free throw by Fred John Jr. to win 74-68.
Belyeu led the scoring for SVSU in the second half scoring 12 points and snagging four boards for the Cardinals while teammate Innocent Nwoko snagged five of his career-high 11 boards. The Warrior defense stepped up and forced the Cardinals to make offensive mistakes and only shot 25.0% from the floor in the second half.
Inside the Boxscore
- Belyeu had a team-high of 22 points for the Cardinals and added five boards and an assist in the win.
- Ellison was right behind Belyeu in scoring with 21 points and had five boards, three assists and a team high four steals.
- Hoskins finished with 14 points and surpassed 1,000 career points in the win over Wayne State. He added three boards, two assists, two steals, and a block for the Cardinals.
- Nwoko had a career-high 11 rebounds in the win and had seven points to his credit. He was named the Meijer "Player of the Game."
Postgame Interview - Randy Baruth
Saginaw Valley hosts Northwood University on Thursday (Feb. 27) in another GLIAC match-up. Tip-off for that contest will be at 8:00 p.m. at O'Neill Arena. Saginaw Valley sits in a tie for fifth place in what is a log jam of teams with close records from spots 5-9 in the GLIAC standings.
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