Eighty years is a long time.
On Thursday, Western Kentucky found that all out the hard way.
James Washington finished with a game-high 24 points as MTSU used a mammoth 25-2 run to dispatch of WKU for the third straight time, 69-60 at E.A. Diddle Arena.
The win marks the first time since 1930 that Middle Tennessee has won three straight games over WKU.
“When we got down, we reverted back to the body language we’ve seen in the past and we struggled to handle adversity,” WKU coach Ken McDonald said. “This series is so lopsided (in WKU’s favor) so three games is three games. We have a chance to play Middle again.
“I’m disappointed that we had an opportunity to work double time in terms of the bye, and they’re up now. We’ve got to handle our own business and not get caught up (in the losing streak).”
The loss also gives MTSU (13-12, 8-4 Sun Belt) a 2 ½ game lead over WKU (10-13, 5-6) for second place in the Sun Belt East – a spot that also comes with a first-round bye in the season-ending Sun Belt Tournament.
And while McDonald didn’t want to make a big deal of the past three games against MTSU, Blue Raiders coach Kermit Davis took the opposite approach.
“We have so much respect for Western’s program and I’ve been up here a lot and had some long trips back to Murfreesboro,” Davis said. “The game does mean a lot to me personally, it means a lot to our team and our fans.
“We’ll enjoy it while it lasts, but we know Western Kentucky will be right back.”
For full coverage, see Friday’s Daily News