MARQUETTE, Mi. The Northern Michigan University Men's Basketball team returned to the Berry Events Center and hosted Lake Superior State University in a Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletics Conference matchup but fell to the Lakers 86-66.
The Wildcats were led by senior Naba Echols (Memphis, Tenn.), who posted team-bests of 16 points, six rebounds and four assists. Senior Isaiah Johnson (Whitefish Bay, Wis.) chipped in with 14 points while junior Sam Taylor (Chicago, Ill.) added 12 points. Junior Myles Howard (Chicago, Ill.) notched nine points.
THE FIRST HALF
Howard and Echols started the game with jumpers but LSSU answered to pull ahead 7-4 before Taylor knocked down a three-pointer to tie it at 7-7 at the 16:30 mark. The Lakers came back to take a 14-7 lead when Johnson hit a jumper for NMU.
Lake Superior State scored again before sophomore Alec Fruin (Beloit, Wis.) hit a three, but the visitors made a jumper in response. Johnson followed with a free throw and added two more soon after. With the score 20-15, LSSU hit a three which Echols followed with two free throws.
After a timeout, the Lakers hit another from behind the arc but Taylor answered with a three and Johnson added a jumper to make it 26-22 at the 7:22 mark. LSSU called timeout and Johnson pulled NMU within 26-24. The teams would then trade baskets, with freshman Naseer Turner (Chicago, Ill.) scoring for NMU.
With the score 28-26, Echols tied the game with 4:20 on the clock with a layup. However, the Lakers responded with an eight-point run before redshirt freshman Troy Summers hit a jumper to make it 36-28 with two minutes in the half. Both teams scored again, with Summers making a layup for NMU and the teams went into halftime with the Lakers on top 38-32.
THE SECOND HALF
Summers hit a free throw to open the half, but the guests followed with a jumper and free throw. Johnson made a jumper which was followed by an LSSU three before Echols hit a three, making the score 44-38 at 14:54 on the clock.
The Lakers scored four points when Fruin hit another three to make it 48-41 but LSSU responded with another three. The Lakers would pushed out to a 58-41 lead before Echols made two jumpers.
The Wildcats would pull within 14 points, but were unable to cut the deficit any closer and fell to the Lakers 86-66.
The Wildcats fall to 8-6 on the season, 3-4 in the GLIAC whlie LSSU improves to 8-5 overall, 4-3 in league play. NMU will look to rebound Saturday as they take on the defending National Champions, Ferris State University, in the Berry Events Center in a game hosted by Bruce Roberts CFP.