Downing scores 11 in the first 20 minutes as MSU holds 23-14 rebounding edge in Valley battle
Jan. 5, 2013
DES MOINES, Iowa -- Missouri State has 11 points from senior Anthony Downing and a 23-14 rebounding advantage through 20 minutes of basketball at the Knapp Center and lead home standing Drake 36-26 at the intermission in Missouri Valley Conference play.
The Bears stretched an early 4-2 lead into a 13-7 advantage just under seven minutes into the game with a flurry of 3-pointers, including two by Downing and one by Marcus Marshall. The Bulldogs clawed their way back within two on a trey by Ben Simons at the 11:40 mark, but the Bears responded with an 13-3 run as six different Bears found the scoring column to stretch their advantage to 28-16 with 5:40 remaining.
Jordan Clarke ended the Bears' run with a put-back after his own miss, but the Bears got a pair of buckets from Drew Wilson, and free throws by Nathan Scheer and Gavin Thurman to return the favor. Scheer's two charity shots with 66 seconds left in the first stanza pushed MSU ahead 36-20.
The Bulldogs got 3-pointers from Simons and Joey King in the final 51 seconds to pull within 10 at the break, but MSU produced one of its best opening halves of the season to lead on the road by double figures.
Joining Downing with a good first half for the Bears were Marshall and Thurman with 7 points apiece, while Wilson scored 6. The Bears are 12-for-26 (.462) from the field and 5-of-10 (.500) from bonus distance. The Bears bounced back from a 1-for-7 start at the line to finish 7-for-14 (.500) in the opening period with 4 turnovers.
Drake has 13 points from King who has four of his club's seven field goals. The Bulldogs are 7-for-26 (.269) and 5-of-14 (.357) from long range. DU is also 7-for-8 (.875) at the line with just 3 turnovers.
Neither team has a blocked shot or a steal. Marcus Marshall's 3 assists is tops thus far.