By Marc Weems
Fifty-five minutes of basketball is what it took the Central Michigan University Chippewas to defeat Youngstown State University in triple overtime, 100-94.
“We really gave the game away with 28 point off our turnovers,” YSU Head Coach Jerrod Calhoun said on their performance. “That’s the frustrating part. If you limit those five, six or seven turnovers, you have 15 or 16. That is what a young team should do but not 22. You win the game probably going away.”
That was a big issue in the game. The Penguins turned the ball over 22 times for 28 points while CMU turned it over 19 times but only allowed YSU to score eight point off the turnovers.
It was a tightly contested game all the way through. CMU (7-2) found ways to stay in the game even withstanding an early 9-2 deficit out of the gate.
Outside of turnovers, YSU (3-7) could have won this game without question. The Penguins outrebounded the Chippewas, 57-46, including a career-high 17 rebounds from Naz Bohannon and career-high 14 from Garrett Covington. Olamide Pedersen helped the Penguins with six blocked shots.
“We fouled quite a bit down the stretch [and] our turnovers. They scored 28 points off our turnovers so that was crucial,” Covington said. “I just have to get back to doing the little things. The past couple of weeks, I haven’t been playing well. I just had to do little stuff and that fuels everything.”
This was Covington’s third 20-point game of the year with 26 points. He has scored 20 points or more in his last two games.
YSU has struggled to stay consistent in this game as they have in many games. The Penguins found ways to get the game tied multiple times. YSU and CMU were tied at 68 after regulation, tied at 76 after the first overtime and then tied at 82 after double overtime. The wheels fell off in the beginning of the third overtime.
CMU began the third overtime period on a 12-2 run and that made the biggest difference in the game outside of other things.
“I don’t know if our guys legs were out. Naz played a lot of minutes,” Calhoun said. “I thought their kids made a couple of in that third period [overtime]. Larry Austin is really, really good and I thought he just got to the cup a lot. He puts a lot of pressure on my young guards.”
Austin finished with 24 points with 11 rebounds and five assists. He did that without any 3-point field goal attempts. Shawn Roundtree also did damage for the Chippewas with 23 point on 7-of-16 shooting. Roundtree and Austin scored the first 11 points of the third overtime to help them to get the win.
Despite the loss, the effort was there and that’s what the Penguins have been giving a great amount of effort.
“Defense, leading and crashing the glass,” Bohannon mentioned on things that he wasn’t doing for awhile. “We are just learning from this. We are going to continue to move forward and we just have to watch film.”
YSU gets a few days off before hosting Western Michigan University at 2 p.m. on Dec. 8 at the Beeghley Center as part of a doubleheader with the women.