Friday, January 25, 2013

Conor's Corner: An Ugly Win for Murray State

Some teams have to win games in an ugly fashion once in a blue moon. But the Murray State basketball team is starting to make this a habit

On Thursday night, Murray State (15-4) picked up their fourth straight win with a 47-39 road victory over Tennessee Tech.

With an eight point win, it marks the twelfth time in 19 games that Murray State played in a game decided by single-digits.

Murray State isn’t going to get an at-large bid if they win games by eight points against Tennessee Tech (7-12) and by three against Austin Peay (5-15)

Who wants to invite a team to the NCAA Tournament that shot 1-18 from three-point land and shot 35 percent from the field? A team that turned it over 18 times and allowed the opponent to make 12 steals.

That’s Austin Peay style basketball. What are the Racers going to do against Belmont, Morehead State, and Tennessee State?

They aren’t going to shoot 25 percent from the floor and 17.6 percent from long-range like Tennessee Tech did.

Give the Racers defense a lot of credit as they forced the Golden Eagles to take a lot of bad shots.

Then again, Tennessee Tech is a bad basketball team.

Belmont, Tennessee State, and Morehead State DVR’ed this game. They’ll see how a bad Tech team stopped Isaiah Canaan and learn how to do the same thing.

Canaan may have scored 15 points, but he only shot 5-15 from the field.

Who will step up when Canaan shoots poorly? Tonight, nobody did, Ed Daniel was the team’s second leading scorer with ten points.

In the future, that’s not going to be good enough. Somebody not named Stacey Wilson needs to shoot the ball. The kid took the second most shots on the team (10 shots) and made only three.

Why not get it to the trio that played a combined 59 minutes and attempted eight shots?
Brandon Garrett, Latreze Mushatt, and Jefferey Moss need to the ball more. They should at least take five shots each.

Wilson and Dexter Fields played a combined 54 minutes and combined for 15 shots. A lot of these shots were unnecessary. They made three of them, good for a shooting percentage of 20 percent.

Part of this is the selfish mentality that the Racers possess this year.

This team dished out five assists for the whole game. If the Racers want to win, they’ll share the ball more.
Remember when Murray State opened the game with an 8-0 lead in the first five minutes?

Two of those assists happened during the first three minutes of the game. When the Racers share the basketball, good things happen.

If the Racers want to lose, go to a post-season tournament worse than the NIT, then they’ll continue to play selfish basketball.

Luckily for Murray State, they’ve ten days to improve. Then, it gets brutal; the Racers get to face Belmont and Tennessee State with only one day to rest. A true March test and if they play like they did today, mark down both of those games as losses.

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