Bradley (8-2) turned in another stellar defensive performance, limiting Mississippi Valley State (0-7) to 42 points on 27.8 percent shooting and forcing 24 turnovers en route to a 77-42 win in the second round of the 2012 Continental Tire Las Vegas Classic Wednesday night at Carver Arena.
After enduring a 7-25 record in 2011-12, the Braves have won eight games before Christmas for just the ninth time in program history and the first time since the 2006-07 NIT squad opened with a 9-3 record. Coming on the heels of Monday's 62-43 win against Georgia Southern, Bradley has held consecutive opponents to fewer than 50 for the first time since Dec. 17 and Dec. 21, 2005.
Junior forward Tyshon Pickett just missed his second straight double-double, leading the Braves with 18 points and nine rebounds. Walt Lemon, Jr. added 14 points, while senior guard Dyricus Simms-Edwards filled the stat sheet with nine points, eight assists, four rebounds and three steals. Simms-Edwards also played lockdown defense on MVSU leading scorer Davon Usher, who entered the game averaging 19.3 points per game, but finished with two points on 1-for-6 shooting. Julius Francis led the Delta Devils with 21 points and nine rebounds.
Bradley dominated the game from nearly every aspect. The Braves outscored their visitors by a 42-18 margin in the paint, 18-2 in transition and 25-7 off turnovers.
After settling for a 30-21 halftime lead and allowing Mississippi Valley State to score on its first possession of the second half, the Braves used a 20-5 run to break away. The Delta Devils managed only one field goal from 15:01 left until Francis scored with 38 seconds remaining in the game.
All eight teams in the Continental Tire Las Vegas Classic field will return to action Saturday at the Orleans Arena, where the Braves will face ACC member Virginia Tech (8-2) in the third game of the day, a 5 p.m. (PT) start. Bradley will face either Colorado State or Portland in Sunday's final round, then will return home to host Drake in the Missouri Valley Conference opener for both teams Dec. 29 at Carver Arena.
Article courtesy BU Sports Information