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5:00 PM PT6:00 PM MT7:00 PM CT8:00 PM ET1:00 PM GMT9:00 PM 北京时间6:00 PM MST8:00 PM EST, Feb 1, 2019
Stroh Center, Bowling Green, Ohio  Attendance: 5,000

MAC stakes high as No. 18 Buffalo visits Bowling Green

The first big showdown of the season in the Mid-American Conference has arrived.

No. 18 Buffalo and Bowling Green have been eyeing each other's success throughout the season, and the two will finally meet for a first-place showdown in the MAC East division on Friday at Bowling Green.

Buffalo has gotten most of the national acclaim for the MAC this year, given that the Bulls beat West Virginia and Syracuse during the nonconference portion of the schedule and have spent a good part of the season ranked.

Buffalo (18-2, 7-1 MAC) is coming off an 83-59 win over Ball State on Tuesday.

The Bulls have won their last two after suffering a 77-75 loss at Northern Illinois on Jan. 22.

"That was a pretty quality win," Buffalo head coach Nate Oats said after the Ball State game.

"I thought that was the best defense we have played for most of the game, until we gave up a few of those offensive rebounds in the middle of the second half. But to start the game, I think they only had eight points after the third media timeout. I was really happy with our effort on the defensive end. I thought our guys locked in defensively."

Bowling Green will have a sour taste in its mouth following a 67-53 loss at Miami (Ohio) on Saturday.

The loss snapped a 10-game winning streak for the Falcons (14-6, 6-1) and handed them their first conference loss.

"It's hard when you get on a 10-game winning streak to sustain that intensity that you have to play with," Bowling Green head coach Michael Huger said after the loss to Miami. "We are taking team's best shots."

The game will feature two of the top scorers in the MAC in Buffalo senior CJ Massinburg and Bowling Green sophomore guard Justin Turner.

Massinburg leads the Bulls in scoring at 18.1 points per game and is shooting 40.9 percent from 3-point range, while Turner is averaging 18.9 points per game for Bowling Green. He is shooting 38.5 percent from behind the arc.

Buffalo does have a couple of other double-digit scorers in senior guard Jeremy Harris, who is averaging 14.1 points a game, and senior forward Nick Perkins, who is averaging 14.0 points and 7.7 rebounds. Sophomore guard Jayvon Graves is averaging 9.3 points and is coming off his second double-double of the season -- 11 points and 12 rebounds vs. Ball State.

The biggest sidekicks for Turner on Bowling Green's team are senior forward Demajeo Wiggins, who is averaging 12.6 points and 11.7 rebounds a game, and junior guard Dylan Frye, who is averaging 11.0 points a game.

If all goes well for each team following Friday's game, there's a good chance this might not be the biggest showdown of the season between the Bulls and Falcons. The teams will play for a second time on March 8 at Buffalo, which will be the regular-season finale for each team.

--Field Level Media

Updated January 31, 2019

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