The Murray State Racers used a 13-5 run end the first half, to escape trouble and eventually push their home winning streak to five in an 86-76 win Saturday over the Detroit Mercy Titans.
The game at the CFSB Center in Murray, Kentucky, saw the Racers improve their season mark to 4-4, while UDM fell to 1-7.
The Racers have the coming week off to take final semester exams before playing at the Evansville Purple Aces Saturday (Dec. 10) at 3 p.m. in the Ford Center.
Jonathan Stark led all scorers with 27 points on 9-of-18 shooting. MSU posted five double-figure scorers as Damarcus Croaker posted a double-double with 11 points and 11 rebounds. Terrell Miller added 19 points and Gee McGhee added 12 points, while Bryce Jones scored 10.
Trailing by 11 with 3:57 left in the first half, the Racers dug in and finished the half with a 13-5 run. UDM’s Corey Allen hit a 3-point basket at the buzzer to put the Titans in front 41-38 at intermission.
MSU regained the lead on an 8-4 run with 15:53 left on a basket by Stark.
Stark had a personal 9-0 run for the Racers, part of a larger 15-9 run for MSU to build a 72-61 lead with 6:11 remaining. The Titans never got any closer than four points the rest of the way.
The Racers are 4-0 at home this season and have won five in a row at the CFSB Center dating back to last season.
Jonathan Stark’s stat line tonight was impressive as the junior continues to be one of the top players in the Ohio Valley Conference. He played 35 minutes and scored 27 points with five assists. He was 9-of-18 from the field and 3-of-4 from the 3-point line and 6-of-6 from the free throw line. He had four rebounds and one steal, and only committed one turnover.
The Racers won the rebounding total 39-35, marking their third-straight game winning the rebound stat.
Damarcus Croaker had his first double-double this season and the second of his career tonight. His first was last season at Austin Peay when he had 14 points and 12 rebounds on Feb. 20, 2016.
Stark, McGhee and Jones combined to hit 17-of-19 from the free throw line tonight.
MSU forced UDM into 17 turnovers. The Racers only gave the ball up 10 times tonight, which matches their season-low for turnovers. MSU also had 10 at Bowling Green on Nov. 21.
Stark has hit a 3-point basket in all eight games this season.
Stark and McGhee have each surpassed the 1,000-point mark in their collegiate careers. McGhee adds his two-years at MSU to the 715 he scored in two seasons at Chattanooga and Stark scored 823 at
Tulane and is in his first season as a Racer.
Tonight’s game was the first meeting between MSU and UDM since 2000 when the Titans beat the Racers in Detroit. MSU won the first meeting at the CFSB Center in 1999. The Racers will play at UDM next season.
Murray State Athletics – Assistant AD – Media Relations