Missouri State looks to protect its home court when it hosts the Bradley Braves at 2:05 Saturday
Jan. 30, 2014
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Missouri State Game Notes
Bradley Game Notes
Missouri State Bears (14-7, 4-5 MVC) vs. Bradley (9-13, 4-5 MVC)
Date: Saturday, Feb. 1, 2014
Tipoff: 2:05 p.m. (Central)
Location: JQH Arena (11,000), Springfield, Mo.
Series: MSU leads 32-18 (MSU leads 18-4 in Springfield, 4-1 at JQH)
Radio: MSU Bears Radio Network, flagship KTXR (101.3 FM) (Art Hains, Mike Keltner)
Live Stats: GameTracker (mobile friendly)
Live Video: Bears All-Access
Listen Live: RadioSpringfield.com
Tickets: Game 22 Tickets | MSU Students Free with BearPass ID
The Last Meeting
January 8, 2014
Bears Rally to Clip Bradley, 68-65
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.
Connect: @MissouriStBears @MSUBearsHoops #MSUBears
THE TEN COUNT
- MSU is averaging nearly two more 3-pointers per game than it did a year ago. The Bears are currently averaging 7.38 long shots per night (3rd in the MVC), compared to 5.42 per game last season which ranked last in the league.
- Austin Ruder (Fr., G, Nixa, Mo.) has taken over the MVC lead in 3-pointers per game (2.38) and is now the third MSU freshman to knock down 50 treys in a season (see p. 4). Only 7 MVC freshman have ever hit 60 or more.
- Jarmar Gulley (Sr., F, Beaumont, Texas) has posted 7 straight double-figure scoring games to match the longest run of his MSU career. He is tied for 5th among all MVC players in scoring (17.1 ppg) in league games.
- Missouri State has shot 50 percent from the field just seven times this season, but has reached the field goal efficiency milestone four times in the last seven games. The Bears are 5-2 this season when making at least half their shots.
- Dorrian Williams (So., G, Oklahoma City, Okla.) ranks 2nd in the league and 12th nationally in assist-to-turnover ratio (3.26) and has started seven straight games. Through 9 Valley games, he has 44 assists with just 12 turnovers (3.67).
- MSU has won 12 of its last 13 home games and has not lost in regulation at JQH Arena since 2/19/13 (UNI).
- A stress fracture has caused Keith Pickens (Sr., G/F, St. Louis, Mo.) to miss the last 6 games. Various injuries have forced the fifth-year co-captain to sit out 11 total games this season in which the Bears are 6-5 without him.
- The Bears are averaging just 9.8 turnovers per game in Valley contests. That’s fewer mishaps per game than the 2012-13 MSU squad committed for the season (10.2), which ranked as the fifth-best average in the nation last year.
- Over the last four games, Ron Mvouika (Jr., G/F, Paris, France) is 10-for-14 from 3-point range and scoring 12.5 ppg.
- The Bears are averaging 36.5 rebounds per game at home (+2.3 margin) and 29.3 boards away from JQH (-6.3).
The series between the Bears and Braves dates back to 1991 when MSU joined the Missouri Valley Conference. The Bears lead the series 32-18, including an 18-4 ledger in Springfield, 4-1 mark at JQH Arena and 7 wins in the last 10 meetings overall.
MSU head coach Paul Lusk is 4-1 against the Braves, including a 2-0 mark at home.
Last year, the teams split two meetings with the Braves scoring a 69-66 decision at Carver (1/19/13) on a trey at the buzzer by Walt Lemon, Jr. MSU avenged the loss on senior night at JQH Arena (3/2/13) as Anthony Downing and Christian Kirk scored 15 apiece for the Bears who committed just 3 turnovers in a 64-56 victory.
Earlier this year in Peoria (Jan. 8), the Bears got 26 points from Jarmar Gulley and 20 from Marcus Marshall to squeak out a 68-65 road win. Walt Lemon, Jr., scored 25 for the Braves who registered 8 steals on the night.
COACH Paul Lusk
Paul Lusk (Southern Illinois, 1995) is 41-45 (.477) in his third season at MSU and 43-68 (.387) in his fourth season overall as a head coach. He is 20-25 in MVC games (13-8 at home, 7-17 on the road), 1-2 in MVC Tournament games and 21-20 in all non-conference games (13-6 at JQH Arena, 6-7 away and 2-7 at neutral sites). He is also 26-15 in all home games, 13-23 on the road, and 2-7 at neutral sites. He is 4-1 against Bradley (2-0 at home).
The 42-year-old Lusk took the reins as MSU’s 17th head coach on April 1, 2011. He came to Springfield after seven seasons at Purdue (2004-11), including his last three as associate head coach there. Now in his 16th season in the coaching profession, Lusk has previous assistant coaching stops at Southwestern Illinois (1996-97), Missouri Southern (1999-2002) and Southern Illinois (2003-04) in addition to a one-year head coaching stint at (Div. III) Dubuque (2002-03). Lusk has played or coached in 10 NCAA Tournaments.
With the seventh-youngest team in Division I basketball last year, Lusk led MSU to its 42nd straight winning record at home and the fifth-best turnover average in the nation (10.2). The 2012-13 Bears also set high-water marks for most games against ranked opponents with six and the best single-season scoring total for a freshman class in program history (855).
MSU will play two on the road, Wednesday, Feb. 5 at Evansville (7:05 p.m.) and Saturday, Feb. 8 at Southern Illinois at 6 p.m., on FOX Sports Midwest.
MSU returns home on Wednesday, Feb. 12 for a rematch with Drake (7 p.m.) on ESPN3.
LAST GAME (Jan. 29)
A 16-2 run by Drake, in crunch time sealed the fate of visiting Missouri State (14-7, 4-5 MVC) as the Bears let a late lead slip away in an 84-74 road loss to the Bulldogs here Wednesday in MVC play.
MSU pushed ahead 66-63 on a pair of free throws by Nathan Scheer with 5:37 to go before Drake’s rally. Jordan Daniels, who finished with 22 points for DU, had 8 points on the run, including a pair of 3-pointers, as the home club surged ahead by 11 just over four minutes later to steal the victory in a game with 17 lead changes and 9 ties.
Austin Ruder scored a career-high 21 for the Bears behind 6-of-9 from 3-point range, while Ron Mvouika added 13, and Jarmar Gulley scored 12 for his seventh straight double-figure scoring game.
The Bears were out-rebounded by a 34-16 margin, helping Drake to 17 second-chance points. DU also dropped in 14-of-24 shots from bonus distance, including three on the game-changing rally late.
Richard Carter scored 23 for Drake, while Chris Caird added 18. Caird also had 6 3-pointers, while Daniels finished with 5 bonus balls.
MSU finished at an even 25-for-50 from the field, 11-for-22 beyond the arc and an impressive 13-of-16 (.813) from the line with a season-low 6 turnovers.
Drake was 24-for-46 (.522) from the field with just 10 two-point shots, and was 22-of-28 (.786) from the stripe with 7 turnovers.
In the first half, the Bears erased an early 9-point deficit and pushed ahead 23-18 on back-to-back 3-pointers by Ruder and Mvouika with just over 7 minutes left. Mvouika’s second trey of the half ended a 19-5 outburst by Missouri State.
Drake rallied with back-to-back 3-pointers of its own to retake the lead less than 2 minutes later, but the lead would change hands six more times before the Bulldogs nudged ahead at the break. A long-range shot by Jordan Daniels swung the momentum back to the home side, and then Seth Van Deest’s layup off a missed DU free throw with 2:18 to go made it a 34-30 game.
MSU would climb within one point of the lead twice more from there, but a pair of Carter free throws in the final 30 seconds gave Drake a 38-35 edge at the intermission.