Ball State moves atop Mid-American with 71-66 win

2/13/10 in NCAABB

DEKALB, Ill. -- Ball State hit 8 of 9 free throws in the final two minutes Saturday to beat Northern Illinois 71-66 and take over first place in the Mid-American Conference West Division.

The Cardinals (13-11, 7-5) moved a half-game ahead of Central Michigan, which hosts Toledo on Sunday. Ball State and Central Michigan meet Wednesday in Muncie, Ind.

Ball State overcame a 30-point, 10-rebound performance by Xavier Silas, who was the only Northern Illinois player in double figures. The Huskies (8-16, 4-8) have lost eight straight games in conference play.

Randy Davis had 20 points, Jarrod Jones 16 and Pierre Sneed 11 for Ball State, which avenged a 62-48 loss to Northern Illinois earlier this season.

Davis hit two free throws with 1:06 left to put the Cardinals on top for good, 66-64. On the ensuing possession, Darion Anderson missed two free throws for Northern Illinois.

Copyright 2010 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Notify me by email about comments that follow mine. Preview