Conwell and Company Lead Sycamores at Indy Classic

Sycamores Take Down Cardinals in Indy Classic

written by: Nick Rush/Indiana State University Athletics

photo by: Tony Harper, Indiana Sports Network/Excel H Sports

videographer: Cainan Harper, Indiana Sports Network/Excel H Sports

Indiana State jumped out to a 23-point lead early in the second half and held off a late Ball State rally as the Sycamores topped the Cardinals inside Gainbridge Fieldhouse in the first game of the Indy Classic on Saturday afternoon.

Ryan Conwell scored a game-high 27 points on 10-of-19 shooting as the Indianapolis native utilized a variety of driving layups and three-pointers on his way to a career-night in front of his hometown fans. The sophomore scored 16 of his 27 points in the second half including going 4-for-6 from behind the arc to propel the Sycamores (10-1) to the win against their in-state rivals.

Photo by: Tony Harper/Indiana Sports Network/Excel H Sports

Overall, four Sycamores scored double-digits in the game with Isaiah Swope (18), Robbie Avila (14), and Julian Larry (11) all hitting the mark on Saturday afternoon. Avila added a game-high seven assists as ISU continued to show off its trademark offense assisting on 17 of the 28 made baskets in the game.

Photo by: Tony Harper/ISN/Excel H Sports

Ball State opened the game with a quick 7-1 lead in the first 90 seconds of the game and held the lead throughout the first 10 minutes of play. The Sycamores took the lead for the first time from a tough Ryan Conwell and-one under the basket with 10:43 remaining in the half, 18-17.

After a short stint when BSU regained the lead, Indiana State jumped out to an 11-point lead from an 11-0 run, now leading 36-25. Conwell and Avila each knocked down a pair of baskets in the spurt, leading to the Sycamores taking the 11-point lead into the halftime break, 40-29.

Photo by: Tony Harper/ISN/Excel H Sports

Indiana State started hot to begin the second half, jumping to a 20-point lead after Conwell drained two threes, and ISU led by as many as 23 with 13:20 remaining, 61-38.

Ball State battled back towards the end of the second half, cutting the deficit to six points with 3:18 on the clock, 73-67. Avila converted on a triple to extend the lead back to nine, but five-straight points from the Cardinals cut the lead down to four points, 76-72.

Swope made a three-pointer with 1:13 remaining to put the game out of reach, and Larry made a pair of free throws with 39 seconds remaining to seal the victory, 83-72.

Photo by: Tony Harper/ISN/Excel H Sports


News & Notes

  • Indiana State improved to 10-1 as the Sycamores became the second team in the MVC to hit double-digit wins on the season.
  • The Sycamores’ nine-game winning streak marks the longest win streak since ISU won 33 in a row during the 1978-79 season.
  • ISU’s 10-1 start marks the best start in the Coach Schertz era surpassing the 9-1 start last season.
  • It marks ISU’s best start with a loss since the Sycamores started 16-1 in the 1976-77 season under Coach Bob King.
  • Ryan Conwell’s 27-point performance marked a season-high for the Sycamore guard and the second time he hit the 20-point mark in 2023-24. His first (25) came in the season opener against St. Mary-of-the-Woods.
  • The Sycamores’ nine three-pointers in the contest marked just the third time in the 2023-24 season ISU has not hit double-digits from behind the arc. It snapped a two-game streak where ISU hit 14 against Bradley and 11 against Northern Illinois.
  • Saturday afternoon’s game marked ISU’s first neutral site win over Ball State in the first competition not in either Terre Haute or Muncie since the 2019 season when the teams played in what was then known as Bankers Life Fieldhouse. ISU was 0-2 against BSU in neutral site games prior to Saturday’s win.
  • ISU’s 83 points in the win marked the fourth consecutive game the Sycamores have scored 80-plus points and ninth overall on the season.
  • The Sycamores move to 8-1 in non-conference play with two games to play in the non-MVC slate on the year.
  • Saturday afternoon marked the first time Jayson Kent has not scored double-digits as the junior forward finished the game with nine points. He increased his dunking totals by two on Saturday with dunks in both the first and second halves against the Cardinals.
  • ISU improves to 76-62 all-time with Saturday’s win over Ball State dating to the inaugural meeting in 1919.
  • Junior Aaron Gray made his 2023-24 debut on the court for Indiana State after being declared eligible for the contest. The Providence, R.I. native played five minutes finishing with a rebound and an assist off the bench.


Ball State MBB Postgame Press Conference 2023 Indy Classic

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