The men hosted Mid Michigan Community College and fell 93-96.
It was a tough first half for the Red Hawks as the Lakers were able to connect with the rim and Lake Michigan struggled defensively against the strong Mid Michigan offense. At one point, the Lakers obtained a 29 point lead and held the Red Hawks to shooting only 47% from inside the paint and only 23% from outside of the perimeter. Mid Michigan on the other hand fired off on all cylinders and shot 59% inside the paint and 73% in the three point range with one being a half court buzzer beater. The men left the first half down 22 points and their fate looked bleak.
The Red Hawks continued to struggle offensively and defensively in the beginning of the second half but this soon changed as they began to out play their opponent. The men began to create plays and connect with the basket while keeping the Lakers on their toes. The Red Hawks began to shut down the Mid Michigan offense and out scored them by 19 points in the second half. The last minute was a nail biter for the men as Deion Gatson (SO/Cassopolis, MI) was able to cause two Laker turnovers and Austin Dukesherer (FR/Grandville, MI) caused one. The men were able to score two three pointers from these turnovers which closed the gap by two points. Mid Michigan was able to hold the men off and reach the foul line which ended the night with a 96-93 Lake Michigan loss.
Gavin Rasler (SO/Niles, MI) led the team with 28 points and 5 rebounds. Deion Gatson scored 18 points had 8 assists,and 5 rebounds while Austin Dukesherer had 19 points with 6 rebounds and 3 assists. Adrien Bucha-Moore (FR/Dowagiac, MI) led the men with 9 rebounds and had 10 points for the night.
Although the men ended in a loss they were able to clinch a National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Region XII Tournament berth with a 9-5 Michigan Community College Athletic Association (MCCAA) Western Conference record. The men will travel to Lansing Community College on Wednesday, February 21, 2018 at 7:30 pm.