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Northern Illinois men's hoops hosts Eastern Michigan today

Published: Thursday, Feb. 20, 2014 5:30 a.m. CST

Eastern Michigan (15-10, 7-5 MAC)

at Northern Illinois (11-13, 5-7)

WHEN: 6 p.m., NIU Convocation Center

RADIO: AM-1360 WLBK, FM 98.9

LAST MEETING: Eastern Michigan defeated NIU, 45-44, in the first round of the 2013 MAC Tournament in Ypsilanti, Mich.

SCOUTING THE EAGLES: NIU and Eastern Michigan have met three times in each of the past two seasons, and the Eagles have won five of those six meetings. Eastern got a one-point victory over NIU in the MAC Tournament, and won the infamous 42-25 game when the Huskies scored just four points in the first half and set multiple NCAA records for offensive futility.

The Eagles have won their past three games, and are coming off a 65-44 win over Toledo, which is tied for the MAC West lead.

Junior forward Karrington Ward leads Eastern Michigan with 12.8 points a game and 6.8 rebounds a contest. Freshman guard Raven Lee averages 10.8 points, while senior forward Glenn Bryant (10.2) and junior guard Mike Talley (10) also average double figures.

OUTLOOK: Saturday’s 62-54 loss to Akron was NIU’s second defeat in its past five games.

The Huskies have gotten a nice boost from junior center Jordan Threloff, who is averaging 11.5 points over his past eight games and is shooting 58.5 percent. Sophomore point guard Travon Baker is averaging 10.8 points in conference play and has scored in double figures in 12 of his past 16 games.

NIU will have a tough time scoring against Eastern Michigan’s defense. The Eagles allow a league-low 62 points a game.

Steve Nitz, snitz@shawmedia.com, @SNitz_DDC

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