Bears Rally to Clip Bradley, 68-65
Jan. 8, 2014
PEORIA, Ill. – Jarmar Gulley scored a career-high 26 points, and Marcus Marshall added 20 to help Missouri State (12-3, 2-1) to a 68-65 road win over Bradley here Wednesday in Missouri Valley Conference play.
The Bears overcame a 12-point first-half deficit and eight second-half lead changes to secure the victory. Gulley was 8-for-14 from the field with a career-best four 3-pointers in his fourth 20-point effort of his career.
Walt Lemon, Jr., scored 25 to lead four Bradley scorers in double figures, while Tyshon Pickett contributed 12 points and a game-high 13 rebounds for the Braves (6-10, 1-2)
Gulley knocked down a 3-pointer from the corner on a pass from Marshall with a minute to go to put the Bears up 64-59. Gulley later gave MSU its largest lead of the night on a lead pass from Nathan Scheer that led to a Gulley layup in transition. He was fouled on the play and converted the free throw to make it 67-61 with 32.8 ticks to go.
Still, Bradley kept fighting and trimmed its deficit to two after a pair of free throws by Lemon and a layup after a Bears’ missed layup with 18.1 showing.
Gulley was fouled again, and he made the front end of the one-and-one to make it 68-65. Pickett gathered the miss on the second shot and got the ball to Lemon who was trapped near the far sideline and could not get off a good shot before the buzzer.
The Bears were 15-for-25 from the field in the second half and shot 23-for-45 (.511) for the game with 10 3-pointers on 23 attempts (.435).
Bradley, which also got 10 points apiece from Omari Grier and Ka’Darryl Bell, shot .438 (21-for-48) from the field and 8-of-19 (.421) from bonus distance with 13 turnovers.
Missouri State scored the first four points of the second half and battled through the flurry of second-half lead changes to push ahead 61-56 on a 3-pointer by Austin Ruder at the 3:52 mark. The Bears would never trail again in a game that also had five ties.
In the first half, Bradley capitalized on six early MSU turnovers and garnered a 12-point advantage just over 10 minutes into the game. The Braves used a 10-0 run over a two-minute span to turn a 5-4 deficit into a 15-5 lead at the 13:46 mark. The Bears managed three free throws from there, before a trey by Greer gave BU its largest lead of the half, 20-8.
However, at the 8:24 mark, Scheer started the Missouri State rally with a free throw which ignited a 17-4 run to end the half and give the Bears a 28-27 lead at the break. Marshall connected on a 20-footer and a long-range 3-pointer before his traditional 3-point play with 27.6 seconds left in the opening stanza gave the Bears their first lead in more than 15 minutes.
The Bears will return to JQH Arena on Saturday for a 7 p.m. battle against No. 6-ranked Wichita State (16-0). Tickets to see MSU battle the highest-ranked team ever to come to Springfield are available at MissouriStateBears.com/tickets or during regular JQH Arena Athletics Box Office hours, in person or by phone at (417) 836-7678. The box office will open at 10 a.m., Thursday through Saturday.