EVANSVILLE, Ind.—Sophomore guard Reggie Johnson scored 21 points to lead the Miami University men’s basketball team at Evansville on Saturday afternoon, but it was not enough as the Purple Aces collected a 78-65 win.
It was the third 20-point scoring effort this season for Johnson, who eclipsed the 20-point mark in Miami’s first two games of the season. Johnson also added a career-high eight assists to his line. Sophomore guard Geovonie McKnight and senior forward Will Felder were the other RedHawks to score in double figures with 13 apiece. It was a career-high-tying mark for McKnight. Felder also had a team-best six rebounds and two blocked shots
The Purple Aces (6-3) led from the start of the first half and built a 12-point lead by the 9:57 mark, 23-11. Miami (1-5) went on a 7-1 flurry to shrink the gap to six by the 8:27 mark, 24-18. After a triple by freshman forward Joshua Oswald, Johnson knocked down four straight points for the Red and White during the surge.
The teams went back and forth, but Evansville began to extend their lead, pushing it to 12 points with 1:32 to go in the opening 20 minutes. A bucket by Johnson with 40 seconds left put the Purple Aces’ lead at 10, which they carried into the half.
In the second half, Evansville extended its lead to 16 points, 52-36, by the 11:11 mark, but Miami chiseled away and was able to cut the deficit to single digits, 58-50, off a Felder layup with 6:32 to go. That was as close as Miami got as the Purple Aces went on to the 13-point win.
Evansville’s D.J. Balentine led all players with 22 points.
Miami has eight days off for final examinations before returning to action on Sunday, Dec. 15 when the RedHawks host local-rival Wright State at 2 p.m. at Millett Hall.