Huntington, WV (SportsNetwork.com) - Jaqawn Raymond led all scorers with 17 points, including the game-winning 3-pointer with 19 seconds remaining, as the Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders escaped the Cam Henderson Center with a 56-53 win over Marshall in a Conference USA tussle.
The deciding trey was one of five makes in eight attempts off the bench for Raymond. Neiko Hunter and Reggie Upshaw chipped in with 10 points apiece for the surging Blue Raiders (21-7, 11-2 C-USA), winners of nine in a row.
The Thundering Herd (9-19, 3-10) lost for the fifth time in their last six outings, despite 16 points and seven rebounds from Ryan Taylor. Kareem Canty rounded out the double-digit scorers with 13 points in the loss.
Marshall shot just 9-of-29 (.310) from the floor in the first half and trailed by as many as eight with three minutes to play until halftime. However, the Herd closed out the period with a 6-0 spurt to trim the margin to 27-25 at the break.
Marshall seized control midway through the second stanza and led by as many as seven with just over seven minutes to play in regulation. But the Blue Raiders managed to hang around thanks to a 50-percent shooting effort from the floor over the final 20 minutes. They shot 5-of-10 from 3-point range in the second half, and none of those threes were bigger than Raymond's from the top of the key in the waning moments.
MT entered the day tied for first place in the C-USA standings with the Texas- El Paso Miners, who play at Southern Miss on Saturday evening.