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Ball State guard recognized by league

Berry is Cardinals' top returning scorer

Wednesday, October 31, 2012 - 4:50 am

Ball State junior guard Jesse Berry was selected to the Mid-American Conference Preseason All-West Division Team on Tuesday.

Five players from each division were selected for preseason honors based on votes by a 24-member MAC News Media Panel.

Berry is the top returning scorer for Ball State after averaging 9.7 points per game last season as a sophomore. The Lafayette native connected on a team-high 50 three-pointers while shooting 35.7 percent from long range.

He scored in double figures 17 times last season, including a career-high 25 points at SIU Edwardsville. Berry and senior guard Jauwan Scaife will provide the Cardinals with a veteran backcourt for the upcoming 2012-13 season.

Joining Berry on the MAC West preseason team are Abdel Nader (Northern Illinois), Rian Pearson (Toledo), Julius Brown (Toledo) and Nate Hutcheson (Western Michigan). Preseason East Division selections were Zeke Marshall (Akron), A'uston Calhoun (Bowling Green), Javon McCrea (Buffalo), Walter Offutt (Ohio) and D.J. Cooper (Ohio).

The MAC office also announced its preseason poll Tuesday.

Selected by the same media panel, Ball State was picked to finish fourth in the West Division. Toledo was picked to win the West, while Ohio was tabbed as the favorite to win the East. The Bobcats, coming off their Sweet 16 run a season ago, were also selected as the favorite to win the MAC Tournament.

Ball State gets its season under way Nov. 11, with a 2 p.m. tipoff against Grambling at Worthen Arena. Fans will have a chance to meet the Cardinals men's and women's teams Thursday with the 2012 Basketball Fan Jam. The free event starts at 6:30 p.m. at Worthen Arena.