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Blue Raiders Overcome CBU 74-57

December 18, 2002 · MT Media Relations

PIPPEN EXPLODES: Senior William Pippen came off the bench to score a career-high 32 points in the Blue Raiders' win over Christian Brothers. Pippen is the first Middle Tennessee player to reach the 30-point mark since Lee Nosse netted 32 against Tennessee Tech on March 1, 2000. The Hamburg, AR, native connected on 14 of 16 shots from the field and 2 of 2 from behind the arc. His 14 made field goals also rank as a personal best. In the opening 20 minutes, Pippen scored the Blue Raiders' last 13 points of the half.

HOT SHOOTING: The Blue Raiders shot a season-high 55.6 percent from the field on 30 of 54 shooting. It marked the best single-game percentage by Middle Tennessee since connecting on 58.2 percent of its shots against IPFW on Jan. 31, 2002. Over the past three games, the Blue Raiders have shot a combined 53.2 percent from the field (82-154) and 42.1 percent from three-point range (24-57).

BENCH WORK: Middle Tennessee's bench outscored CBU's tonight, 46-10, and outrebounded them 17-5. It marked the fifth time this year MT's bench has outscored the opposition.

JACKSON GETS FIRST START: Junior Steven Jackson earned his first start of the season tonight against Christian Brothers. The Memphis, TN, native made the 14th start of his career.

LINEUP NO. 5: The Blue Raiders displayed their fifth starting lineup of the season when they took the floor against CBU. Tonight's starting five consisted of forwards Bryant Mitchell and Steven Jackson, along with guards Marcus Robinson, Eric Parham, and Tommy Gunn. Gunn is the only player this year to start in all nine games.

196 AND COUNTING: Middle Tennessee went 7-for-17 from three-point range against Christian Brothers to extend its streak to 196 straight games with at least one trey.

THIS 'N' THAT: Bryant Mitchell had a season-high seven rebounds ... William Pippen has led the Blue Raiders in scoring in four of the last five games ... Marcus Robinson recorded a career-high four assists ... The Blue Raiders' rebound margin of +17 tonight was the largest of the season and the most by an MT team since having a +18 edge against Bryan College in the 2001-02 season opener - a span of 37 games.

NEXT UP: The Blue Raiders will go back on the road to face Austin Peay on Saturday at 7 PM. It will mark Middle Tennessee's fourth game against a team from the OVC this year.

QUOTES

MT Head Coach Kermit Davis: "I thought our effort was fine tonight. Offensively, we're getting better. We just couldn't guard the dribble tonight. We just can't get all the pieces to get together on one night. I have to give credit to Christian Brothers. [CBU Head Coach] Mike Nienaber is a good friend of mine and he does a great job with his team."

MT Guard Tommy Gunn: "We needed that win tonight. They're a good team and will win a lot of games at their level. We needed the win so we could go to Austin Peay on Saturday with some momentum"

MT Forward William Pippen: "We took advantage of a smaller post tonight. I finally had the type of game I knew I was capable of. We had fun out there tonight and, hopefully, it will carry over Saturday on the road."

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