INDIANA STATE CAN’T KEEP PACE WITH UNBEATEN DRAKE, FALLS 81-63
Credit Source: Indiana State University Athletics
TERRE HAUTE, IND. — The Indiana State men’s basketball team struggled to keep up with the dynamic Drake offense Sunday, Dec. 27, falling to the undefeated Bulldogs in the Missouri Valley Conference opener 81-63 in the Hulman Center.
There’s no time to dwell on the outcome, however, as the two Valley foes will play one another again Monday, Dec. 28 at 5 p.m. The game will be broadcast on ESPN3 and on WIBQ 97.9 FM.
Junior Cooper Neese and sophomore Tre Williams led four Indiana State double-digit scorers with 13 points apiece. Neese knocked down four from long-range while adding three rebounds, and Williams tacked on four boards. Senior Tyreke Key and fifth-year Tobias Howard Jr. each added 10 points. Sophomore Jake LaRavia finished with nine points and grabbed a season-high 12 rebounds.
Drake was led in scoring by guard D.J. Wilkins, who put up 22 points thanks to 5-of-7 shooting from downtown.
The Sycamores looked as if they had found their footing against the Bulldogs’ potent offense, erasing an double-digit deficit to take a two-point lead, 28-26, thanks to a Neese triple with 3:18 to play in the first half. The offense went stale, however, and managed just one field goal the rest of the stanza, and went into the break trailing 31-30.
Indiana State regained the lead within the first 60 seconds of the second half, but Drake took control from there as the Bulldogs went on a 12-2 run over the next five minutes and never looked back.
ISU shot 38.8% (19-of-49) from the floor for the game, while allowing Drake to shoot a blistering 54.1% (33-of-61) overall and 50% (9-of-18) from downtown. The Bulldogs controlled almost every aspect of the game, scoring more points in the paint (42-22), winning the rebound battle (37-26), and finishing with more assists (13-7). The Sycamores managed more fast break points (13-4) and fewer turnovers (13-12).
The Sycamores will leave town for their first Missouri Valley Conference road contest next weekend, taking on Missouri State University in Springfield, Mo. Saturday, Jan. 2 at 6 p.m. and Sunday, Jan 3 at 4 p.m.