Buffalo leads Ball State 30-15 at halftime

It would be reasonable to think Ball State would come out aggressive and hungry against Buffalo, especially on their home floor. The momentum was on the home team’s side while the visitors have lost three in a row and nine of the last 10 games. But the Cardinals were thoroughly outplayed in every possible manner in the first half.

The Bulls physically took it to the Cardinals. Bulls’ leading scorer Brittany Hedderson recorded 10 first half points, while Nytor Longar also turned in a 10-point first half. The Bulls outscored the Cardinals 18-to-2 in the paint. The Cardinals’ defense struggled to contain Longar, who at 6-foot-2, is the tallest player on the Bulls roster. Suzanne Grossnickle, who is also listed as 6-foot-2, was given the responsibility of covering Longar, but the senior co-captain didn’t fair well.

The Cardinals’ offense went cold as well, going 9:32 without scoring a field goal. During that span, the Bulls put together a 14-0 run, taking control of the first half.

More to come…

***

Good day from Worthen Arena…

Ball State women’s basketball head coach Kelly Packard has partnered up with the Barefoot Coaching Program for Samaritan’s Feet, and will be coaching shoeless when her team hosts Mid-American Conference rival Buffalo this afternoon.

“I am excited to bring Samaritan’s Feet, particularly, the Barefoot Coaching Movement, to Ball State University,” Packard said in a press release. The Barefoot Coaching platform assists Samaritan’s Feet in raising funds in order to take shoes directly to underprivileged children. The shoes meet a physical need, and the personal touch of the delivery and distribution of the shoes creates hope.”

Ball State (8-14, 3-6) snapped its five-game losing skid with a 75-56 triumph at Kent State on Wednesday night. It was just the second road win of the season for the Cardinals, with their other victory away from Worthen Arena coming via a 55-50 win at Evansville back on Nov. 29, 2011. The win over the Golden Flashes also gave Ball State its first conference road victory of the season. Three players reached double-figures in scoring for Ball State, including a game-high 16-point outing from junior guard Shanee’ Jackson. Senior co-captain forward Suzanne Grossnickle also had a stellar performance, earning a double-double with 13 points and 11 boards. Grossnickle was a perfect 6-for-6 from the field. Sophomore guard Brandy Woody also had a noteworthy game, finishing with 13 points.

Buffalo has struggled of late. The Bulls come to Muncie on the heels of a 102-92 loss at Western Michigan on Thursday night. Their lone conference victory came over Northern Illinois on Jan. 22 by a score of 65-46. Senior guard Brittany Hedderson leads the Bulls offensively, averaging over 20 points per contest.

On paper, it’ll be tough for Buffalo to pull out a rare road win, especially at Worthen Arena, where Ball State is at its best.

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