FORT WAYNE, Ind. — For the first time in 10 years, the Cleveland State Vikings hold claim to the Horizon League regular season title after defeating the Purdue Fort Wayne Mastodons Saturday, 67-55.
Cleveland State’s men’s basketball team shares the title with Wright State as both teams finished with a 16-4 conference record, making the two teams co-champions.
Although the outcome was positive, the Vikings battled an early deficit after ending the first half down 30-22.
Sophomore Jeremy Sanchez helped the team rally with a steal and a score and junior D’Moi Hodge hit a three on the following possession to put the Vikings ahead 37-36.
Thanks to some sharp three point shooting from Hodge and senior Craig Beaudion, the Vikings took an 11 point lead with 10 minutes left in the game.
The Mastodons got back in the game, bringing the game within two possessions multiple times, but the Vikings were able to hold them off and went on a 12-5 run in the final six minutes of play.
Senior Torrey Patton ended the game with his fourth double-double of the season, scoring 14 points and notching 10 rebounds. Junior Tre Gomillion led the team with 18 points.
Cleveland State finished the regular season at the top of the league for the first time since the 2010-11 season.
The Vikings head into the postseason with a first-round bye and will host a Horizon League Tournament Quarterfinal matchup on March 2 at the Wolstein Center.