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Dartis ties 3-point record but Ohio's offense struggles

Bobcats shoot 35.5% in 65-54 loss to Cardinals

MUNCIE, Ind. – Jordan Dartis tied the Ohio school record for career 3-pointers, but the Bobcats struggled offensively at the start, fell behind early and dropped a 65-54 decision to Ball State on Saturday at Worthen Arena.

By hitting one 3-pointer, Dartis now has 290 in his career to tie Nick Kellogg’s Bobcats record. But Dartis was just 1 of 7 overall, including 1 of 5 from long range, and his teammates were not sharp offensively either, with the Bobcats shooting just 35.5% in the game, including just 29.6% before halftime.

Ben Vander Plas led Ohio (10-12, 2-7 Mid-American Conference) with 12 points and nine rebounds, but he made only 5 of 16 shots, missing all seven of his 3-point tries. Jason Preston went 3 of 11 for nine points with five assists and four points. Lunden McDay was the bright spot offensively with 11 points on 5-of-7 shooting.

"I thought they (Ball State) were the aggressor on both ends of the floor," Ohio coach Jeff Boals said. "I thought they were physical with pushes off the screens.”

Ball State (12-9, 5-3 MAC) was not great offensively either, shooting 38.6% in the game, but they got enough scoring to win, especially from Tahjai Teague, who had 24 points and eight rebounds. Jarron Coleman added 10 points and nine rebounds.

Ohio never led, and the Ball State lead reached double digits at 19-9 with 9:06 remaining in the first half on a Teague 3-pointer. The Cardinals led 31-19 at halftime.

Dartis’ record-tying 3-poitner came from the corner early in the second half, cutting Ball State’s lead to 35-24, but Teague followed with a dunk and then a 3-pointer to make it 40-24. A Teague layup pushed the Cardinals’ lead to 46-28 with 12:16 remaining, and Ohio got no closer than 10 the rest of the way.

“They're the No. 1 defense in the league and they play the pack line, so we knew going in that we'd have to move and screen and I didn't think we did a great job of that,” Boals said. “Thought we were stagnant. But I thought they had a lot to do with it."

Ohio is off during the week before returning to action to host rival Miami at 3:30 p.m. Saturday at The Convo.

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