The Wayne State men’s basketball team (13-7, 10-4 GLIAC) extended its winning streak to four games Feb. 2, defeating the Northern Michigan Wildcats (8-11, 4-8 GLIAC) 72-55 at the Barry Events Center in the Upper Peninsula.
With the win, the Warriors moved into second place in the GLIAC South and third overall, holding a ½ game lead over both Findlay and Michigan Tech.
The two teams went back-and-forth in the opening half, as there were nine total lead changes.
The Wildcats took a 10-5 lead after nearly five minutes of play. The Warriors chipped away at the deficit and after an 8-0 run, took a 21-14 lead.
NMU fought back, taking a 28-25 lead with 5:24 remaining in the half. That is when the Warriors took control. Trailing 28-27, sophomore guard Bryan Coleman – who finished with 18 points – hit a three-pointer to give WSU a two-point lead – one they wouldn’t relinquish.
After a three-pointer by senior guard Stacey Waters beat the halftime buzzer, the Warriors went into the locker room with a 41-31 lead. Waters finished with 10 points.
The Warriors started the second half off on an 18-1 run to extend their lead to 27 at 59-32. WSU finished the first half on a 16-3 run, so combining the two runs—the Warriors outscored NMU 34-4 over a 13-minute stretch.WSU never gave the Wildcats any hope of a comeback, leading by as many as 23 points the remainder of the game.
Senior center Ike Udanoh contributed with 19 points and seven rebounds, while junior forward Ian Larkin finished with 12 points.
WSU will play at Michigan Tech Feb. 4 at 3 p.m. in a key conference matchup with both teams fighting for a top four spot in the GLIAC standings and a home playoff game in the GLIAC tournament.