An eventual 19-1 second-half run propelled the Indiana State Sycamores to a 56-46 victory over Illinois State on Doug Collins Court at Redbird Arena Wednesday night before a crowd of 4,039. With the win, the Sycamores (13-12, 8-6 MVC) swept the season series against the Redbirds (11-14, 3-11 MVC) for the second time in three seasons.
Indiana State’s Jake Odum led all scorers with 13 points, while Tony Lewis paced the Redbirds with 11. Lewis posted his second-straight double-digit scoring effort for the Redbirds, after posting 16 points against Wichita State last Saturday on the road. Odum and Lewis both led their respective teams in rebounds with eight.
Things were tight early on, as the lead changed hands five times before Indiana State eventually took an early 14-11 advantage. A Blake Mishler layup capped off an 8-2 Redbird run soon after to give ISU a 19-16 lead with 7:53 left in the first half. The see-saw battle continued, as the Sycamores quickly responded with a 9-1 run to take a 25-20 lead going into halftime.
Neither team could find a rhythm while shooting in the first half, as Illinois State was 7-for-18 from the field, while Indiana State managed to shoot only 10-for-32. Indiana State also capitalized on Redbird mistakes by scoring 15 points off of the Redbirds’ 13 first half turnovers. Eleven of the turnovers came from Sycamore steals.
Early second half three-point baskets by Alex Rubin and Trey Blue contributed to a 7-1 run, which helped the Redbirds knot the score at 30-30 with 16:32 left in the game. A 13-2 run later propelled Illinois State to an eight-point lead with 9:36 remaining in the second half. The Redbird lead quickly dwindled, however, as the Sycamores stormed back to tie the score at 45-45 with 5:13 left in the game.
A layup from Koang Doluony gave the lead back to Indiana State, and an eventual 14-0 Sycamore run gave them a 51-45 advantage with 1:44 left on the clock before Redbird head coach Tim Jankovich called a timeout to regroup. Following the timeout, the Redbirds were unable to mount a comeback and Indiana State eventually finished on a 5-1 run to seal the victory. Indiana State recorded 16 steals in the game, a new Redbird Arena record for a Redbird opponent, and finished with a 23-5 points off turnovers advantage.
Illinois State will be back in action on Saturday, as they face Missouri State at 7:05 p.m. at Redbird Arena.
article courtesy ISU Sports Information