Eastern Michigan downs Herd, 90-81

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, February 4, 2003

YPSILANTI, Mich. -- Michael Ross had 17 points, nine rebounds and seven assists as Eastern Michigan beat Marshall 90-81 on Monday.

Eastern presented a balanced scoring attack as five players scored in double figures and seven had at least eight points.

The Eagles were in control throughout, taking a 52-39 halftime lead after shooting more than 60 percent (20-of-33) in the first half.

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Marshall (9-9, 5-5 Mid-American) managed to cut the deficit to five points on two occasions in the first half, but a 12-2 Eastern run gave the Eagles a 69-54 lead with 9:46 remaining.

Eastern's reserves were especially valuable as the Eagles (9-9, 3-6) had 36 bench points to Marshall's 17.

Ronald Blackshear scored a game-high 40 points -- 23 of which came in the first half -- to lead Marshall. Blackshear went 13-for-26 on shooting, including 8-of-15 on 3-point attempts.