MSU Freshmen Come Up Big in Exhibition Opener at JQH
Forward - Gavin Thurman
Forward - Gavin Thurman

Oct. 30, 2012

Final Stats

SPRINGFIELD -- Missouri State's six freshmen combined for 50 points, and the Bears knocked down 17 three-pointers here Tuesday night (Oct. 30) in an impressive 81-67 exhibition win over visiting Missouri Western.

Gavin Thurman (Fr., Wichita, Kan.) led all players with 21 points, while Anthony Downing (Sr., Atchison, Kan.) added 15, and Marcus Marshall (Fr., St. Paul, Minn.) contributed 14 in the win for MSU.  Thurman was 6-of-9 from three-point range on the night.

Adarius Fulton went 7-for-9 from the field, connected on six 3-pointers and notched 20 points for Missouri Western.

The Bears finished 17-for-38 (.447) from three-point range with a performance that would have shattered the school three-point record of 14. MSU was 27-for-55 (.491) overall and committed just four turnovers.

The visitors stayed close in the early going and overcame an early five-point deficit to tie the game, 16-16, with a layup by Alex Tuluka-Mfumupembe at the 11:51 mark of the opening period. Missouri State then responded with three 3-pointers over the next three-and-a-half minutes, including two by Thurman, to build a 25-18 advantage.

But, MWSU battled back late in the first half with a 9-2 run of its own to knot the score at 27 at the 5:13 mark. A dunk and jumper by Alfreeman Flowers along with a three by Dzenan Mrkaljevic highlighted the run by Coach Tom Smith's Griffons.

But just before the half, Missouri State responded with 20-5 run as Marcus Marshall and Thurman each hit a pair of treys, and Michael Simpson hit another to make it a 47-32 game at the intermission.

MSU needed just 68 seconds in the second half to open up its biggest lead of the night as Downing scored a quick layup and a pair of free throws to make it 51-32.  Five minutes later, the Griffons trimmed the home team's edge to 13 points on a traditional three-point play by Cedric Clinkscales, but Simpson responded with a 3-pointer to push the Bears ahead by 16.

MWSU would climb back within 10 in the final three minutes of the contest, as Flowers scored on a tip-in and dunk on back-to-back trips to make it a 75-65 game. But as it did most of the night, Missouri State responded with another mini-run and closed out the exhibition contest with a 6-2 spurt behind a Marcus Marshall three ball, a free throw by Nathan Scheer and a layup by Bruce Marshall.

Dorrian Williams finished with a game-high 7 assists, while Drew Wilson snagged a team-best 5 rebounds for Coach Paul Lusk's squad.

In all, 10 Missouri State players landed in the scoring column with six players contributing to the barrage of 17 three-pointers.

Missouri Western finished 25-for-50 (.500) from the field, including 9-of-22 (.409) from bonus range. The Griffons were also 8-of-12 at the line and out-rebounded the Bears by a 30-24 margin.  

The Bears conclude their brief two-game exhibition slate on Saturday night at JQH Arena as they host McKendree at 7:05 p.m.  Tickets for the preseason battle are available on-line at Fans may also purchase tickets in person at the Chevy Pickup Window at JQH Arena or by phone at (417) 836-7678 during box office hours, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., weekdays.



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