Dec. 1, 2012
Contact: Greg Murphy
CLEVELAND, Ohio - Charlie Lee scored a career-high 22 points and Cleveland State used several key stops on the defensive end to earn a 78-73 win over Toledo on Saturday afternoon in the Wolstein Center.
The win improves the Vikings to 6-2 this year, while Toledo slips to 2-5.
Freshman Bryn Forbes scored 16 points, following up on his career-high 18 point effort on Wednesday night at Ball State. Tim Kamczyc added 15 points, while Sebastian Douglas scored 10 and added five steals.
"This was a hard fought game and I thought that team outplayed us, but our kids never gave up which was very important," head coach Gary Waters said. "They never quit and I also thought the fans gave them some energy. THis game turned out to be an offensive game and that's not what I'm about. But our guys over the last three and a half minutes stopped them five straight times and that was the ballgame."
After Rian Pearson hit a pair of free throws to give the Rockets a 71-69 lead with 2:15 left, the Vikings had a turnover, but Toledo could not extend the lead.
Instead, Douglas knocked away a pass and saved the ball from going out of bounds to Lee who pushed the ball up the court and found a cutting Douglas who converted a reverse layup to tie the game. After a CSU stop, Lee hit a three-pointer to give CSU its first lead of the contest with 31 seconds left.
Douglas then stole a pass at midcourt and took it the length of the court for a layup, extending the lead to five (76-71) with 19 seconds left.
A CSU foul allowed Toledo to pull back within two (76-73) with a pair of free throws, but Lee calmly sank two free tosses on the other end for the final margin.
The Vikings trailed at the half, 32-26, thanks in large part to Toledo shooting 52-percent from the floor and 11 Viking turnovers. It was the sixth time that CSU trailed at the half this year, but the fourth time the Vikings rallied to win.
A quick Toledo bucket to open the second half extended the lead to seven (33-26), but CSU responded with a 13-6 run to tie the contest at 39-39 on a Forbes three-pointer.
Toledo would use a run midway through the half to regain a nine-point advantage (56-47) with just under 10 minutes to play before the Vikings began to chip away again, capped with five straight stops on the defensive end in crunch time.
The Vikings shot 53-percent (27-51) for the game, highlighted by a 17-of-26 (.654) effort in the second half when they also had just five turnovers.
The Vikings now have a week off until playing at N.C. State next Saturday (Dec. 8) at 1:00 p.m.
Today was the 11th all-time meeting between the Vikings and Toledo. CSU has won four straight in the series. Toledo still leads the overall series, 6-5.
Luda Ndaye got the start for CSU this afternoon, filling in for Grady. It was Ndaye's second career start.
CSU trailed at the half, 36-26. It was the sixth time in eight games that the Vikings were down at halftime this year. The Vikings are now 4-2 when trailing at the half.
The Vikings have now 11 straight games against opponents from the Mid-American Conference, including three this year.
CSU improved to 3-0 at home this year and have won five straight in the Wolstein Center dating to last season.
Head coach Gary Waters won his 299th career game.
Charlie Lee scored a career-high 22 points to go along with seven assists. He has at least five assists in six of the eight games this year.
Bryn Forbes followed Wednesday's career-high 18 point effort with 16 points this afternoon.
Waters coached in his 212th career game at CSU today, moving him into second place on the list for most games coached at CSU. He passed Kevin Mackey (211) and still trails Ray Dieringer (360).