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Misc Vikings Vikings Archive Cleveland State's Rally Comes Up Short Against Wright State
Written by Tom Mieskoski

Tom Mieskoski


The Cleveland State men's basketball team fought back from a 13-point deficit with eight minutes remaining, but couldn't get the final shot to fall, as Wright State held on to a 49-46 victory Sunday afternoon at the Wolstein Center.

Trey Lewis had a chance to tie the game and send it into overtime, but his desperation three-pointer from 30-feet bounced off the rim as the buzzer sounded.

With the loss, CSU (11-9 overall, 3-3 Horizon League) drops 2 1/2 games back of first-place Green Bay and a game-back of second-place WSU (12-9, 4-2 HL).

In the Horizon League, the top two seeds receive a double-bye into the semi-finals, while the third-seed receives a bye into the second round.

"We are okay. I don't feel bad at the place we are in," said Vikings head coach Gary Waters. "We got to get it back some place and can't give up anything now."

The Vikings played again without the services of Anton Grady and Sebastian Douglas, who missed their second straight game with concussions.

According to, CSU is 9-5 when all of its top players play and 2-4 when missing some of its top players.

CSU could of used them on Sunday as they never could get its offense on track against the HL's top defensive team.

WSU's defense, which holds teams to a league-best 62 points per game,  held CSU to season-lows in points (46) and field goals (16). CSU shot 32.7 percent from the field and was 5-for-21 on three-pointers.

The Raiders weren't much better offensively as they shot 33.3 percent and made two more field goals then CSU.

"I got to give Wright State credit their defense was really tough on us today," said Waters. "Their defense is like a man-zone. They are all cluttered up in there and they are going to make you shoot shots. Today we didn't shoot like we are normally do."

CSU's guard trio of Lewis, Bryn Forbes and Charlie Lee went a combined 6-for-29 shooting from the field, including 4-for-18 on three-pointers, for 19 points. 

"Every close game that we have lost that was the same emo," said Waters on his guards struggles from the field.

Forbes scored 10 of his 14 points in the first half. But he was only 1-for-5 shooting in the second half.

Lewis didn't score his first basket until 6:37 left in the game. He had five points on 2-for-13 shooting.

Lee missed all four of his shots from the field and went scoreless.

"We didn't execute tonight," said Waters. "You have to have an inside presence against them. I watched their game against Green Bay and all they did was go inside to their big guy."

CSU didn't have much of an inside game as Grady's replacements combined for six points on 3-for-6 shooting.

One of the few bright spots for the Vikings was Jon Harris, who had a double-double with 17 points and 11 rebounds. He was 6-for-12 from the field.

The Vikings held a 19-14 lead with seven minutes to go in the first half, but WSU would finish the half strong going on a 6-2 run to end the half and took a 29-23 lead at the break.

"I thought we lost the game right at the end of the first half when they got that cushion," said Waters. "Then in the first five minutes of the second half, we didn't score."

CSU only made two field goals in the first 12 minutes of the second half, as the Raiders extended the lead to 44-31 on Kendall Griffin's three-pointer.

A tip-in by Harris and a three-pointer from Lewis started CSU's comeback. The Vikings used a 9-3 run over the next four minutes to cut the lead down to 47-40.

Then after CSU got a defensive stop, a costly turnover prevented the Vikings from making it a two-possession game. Instead WSU's Matt Vests' steal and dunk extended the lead to 49-40 with 3:15 to go. That was WSU's last point of the game.

"If we didn't turnover the ball, now it's a different game," said Waters.

The Vikings would score the next three baskets to cut it to a one possession game (49-46) on Lewis' three-pointer with 44 seconds left, but that would be as close as they would get.

Jerran Young led WSU with 10 points.

Waters expects that Grady and Douglas will be back for Wednesday's road game at Illinois-Chicago. The Flames have yet to win a game in Horizon League play (0-5).

"We're going on the road Wednesday and got to get it back," said Waters.

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