Wright State’s Men’s Basketball team notched their eighth Horizon League victory of the season Friday night and kept hope alive for a third place finish and first round bye in the league tournament; one with a coveted NCAA Tournament berth awaiting the champion. It was a unique game with a 10 EST tip time on ESPNU, one which saw the Raiders hold on for a 65-61 victory over Detroit (13-16, 6-8) in front of 5,042 at the Nutter Center.
The home team struggled early offensively, missing its first eight attempts from the field, the first made Raider field goal coming on a Reggie Arceneaux three nearly nine minutes into the first half. Arceneuax would bury another three on the next posession to make it 14-12, Detroit. The Titans largest lead of the first half was nine, and they took a 30-29 advantage into the locker room.
The Raiders would come out slow to begin the second half, falling behind 35-31 before responding with a 16-4 run, 10 of which came from senior Matt Vest. Wright State earned their first lead of the game with 14:32 remaining on a Vest three-pointer and would not give it up the rest of the way.
Detroit would pull within 2 on a tip-in with one second on the clock, followed by a Carlton Brundidge foul, which was initially thought to be after the final buzzer sounded.
Seven tenths of a second would be put back on the clock and Reggie Arceneaux doubled the margin of victory at the free throw line, as spectators were already headed for the exits just past midnight.
The Raiders shot 40% for the game, including 44% from three point range, but were outscored 28-10 in the paint. Detroit also held a sizeable advantage in second chance points, 24-5, as they collected 17 offensive rebounds.
AJ Pacher led WSU scorers with 19, while Vest had 16 and Arceneaux contributed 15 off the bench. Evan Bruinsma paced Detroit with 19 points and 12 rebounds, with Juwan Howard Jr. adding 16 points.
Wright State high flyer Jerran Young was in street clothes Friday night and is undecided for Tuesday’s matchup, though he says he will play.
A Look Ahead:
The Raiders (16-13, 8-6) enter the final week of the regular season looking to complete the sweeps of both Valparaiso (17-12, 9-5) and UIC (5-23, 0-14). The Crusaders come to the Nutter Center for a 7 EST tip Tuesday (ESPN3), Wright State’s Senior Night. The regular season finale will be in Chicago on Saturday as the Raiders play UIC at 2 EST (Horizon League Network).