Bears Lead ISU at the Intermission, 31-28, in MVC Title Tilt
ST. LOUIS – Missouri State scored the first nine points of the game and has out-rebounded Indiana State by seven in the opening period to take a 31-28 lead into the intermission at Scottrade Center in the Missouri Valley Conference Tournament championship game.
The Bears (25-7) have 8 points from Kyle Weems and Jermaine Mallett to lead all players, while Adam Leonard has a pair of three-pointers to give him six at the break.
Jake Odum started a 7-0 run by the Sycamores with a layup at the 13:31 mark, and three-pointers by Aaron Carter and Jordan Printy pushed ISU into a 12-12 tie just over a minute later.
The Bears pushed ahead 17-12 on a jumper and NBA-range three-pointer by Weems over the next one minute, 12 seconds before another 7-0 run by the No. 3 seeded Indiana State club gave the lead back to ISU, 19-17.
The lead would change hands five times over the next six minutes before a Nafis Ricks layup in transition and jumper off the glass by reserve Calbe Patterson put the Bears up by three at the break.
MSU was 12-for-28 (.429) from the field in the first half and 4-of-11 (.364) from long range while making 3-of-4 (.750) at the line. The Bears had just four turnovers and out-rebounded the Sycamores by an 18-11 margin, including 8 offensive boards that led to nine second-chance points.
Indiana State (19-13) was led by Jordan Printy with six points on a pair of threes. The Sycamores were 10-of-20 (.500) from the field and 4-of-9 (.444) from beyond the arc, while making 4-of-6 (.667) at the line.
The second-half possession arrow points Indiana State's way. An automatic berth in the NCAA Tournament is at stake as MSU is pushing for its first appearance since 1999 and first MVC Tournament title since 1992.