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MID-AMERICAN TOURNAMENT Gates, Haut lead Kent State; Ohio outlasts Miami

Published: Mon, March 17, 2003 @ 12:00 a.m.

Central Michigan and Northern Illinois also advanced to the semifinals.


CLEVELAND -- Antonio Gates scored 21 points and Eric Haut added 13 to lead Kent State to a 79-57 win over Marshall in the quarterfinals of the Mid-American Conference tournament Thursday.

Gates, the lone returning starter from Kent State's 2002 NCAA tournament squad, and Haut fueled a 24-4 spurt that helped the Golden Flashes (20-8) advance to today's semifinals.

Marvin Black and Ronald Blackshear scored 10 points apiece for Marshall (14-15), which went 8:01 without scoring a basket in the second half.

Kent State advanced to the NCAA final eight last year, and after dropping six of their last regular-season games, the Golden Flashes will now have to win the MAC to make the 65-team NCAA field.

They took their first step against Marshall.

With Gates on the bench after picking up his third foul, Haut nailed a 3-pointer to put Kent State up 55-48 with 11 minutes remaining. Gates returned 30 seconds later, and the Golden Flashes responded with a 16-0 run to open a 71-48 lead.

Gates made a 15-foot jumper, two free throws and dunk, and Haut chipped in with another 3 during the burst to put Marshall away.

Gates added seven rebounds and six assists before being poked in the right eye by Marshall's David Anderson with 4:54 remaining. He was taken out and needed five stitches to close a cut on his eyelid.

After shooting 57 percent from the floor and making 6-of-9 3-pointers in the first half, the Thundering Herd made just 4-of-19 shots in the second half.

Ohio 65, Miami 55, OT

Brandon Hunter scored 15 points, including two on a putback to force overtime.

Thomas Stephens led the No. 11 seed Bobcats (14-15) with 17 points and Hunter, the nation's leading rebounder, added 13 rebounds.

Josh Hausfeld led No. 3 seed Miami (13-15) with 15 points and Juby Johnson had 12.

Northern Illinois 75,Western Michigan 63

P.J. Smith scored 33 points -- 11 coming in a decisive second-half run -- to lead Northern Illinois.

Smith, who came in averaging 14 points per game, had 15 at halftime and didn't slow down in the second half as the fourth-seeded Huskies (17-13) moved into the MAC semifinals for the first time since 1982.

Smith finished 13-of-19 from the field, including 4-of-5 on 3s.

Anthony Kann led No. 5 Western Michigan (19-10) with 19 points and 10 rebounds.

Central Michigan 87,Bowling Green 70

Chris Kaman scored 25 points as top-seeded Central Michigan advanced to the MAC semifinals for the first time since 1990.

Kaman, the MAC's player of the year and top defensive player, added 14 rebounds and J.R. Wallace had 19 points for the Chippewas (22-6).

Freshman Ronald Lewis had 30 points and John Reimold 20 for Bowling Green (13-16).


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