Defensive Minded Aces and Bears Locked Into a Battle at JQH
Forward - Keith Pickens
Forward - Keith Pickens

Feb. 2, 2013

SPRINGFIELD -- Missouri State and Evansville are locked into a defensive battle at JQH Arena with the Aces scoring the last four points of the first period to lead 24-23 at the intermission.

The Bears trailed by four points twice, but turned an 11-7 deficit at the 11:18 mark into an 18-13 advantage less than six minutes later. The 11-2 run sparked by Keith Pickens who led the gray-clad Bears with six points in that stretch and a game-high 7 points and 4 rebounds in the half.  Gavin Thurman converted all three free throws on a 3-point foul in the run as well.

Evansville, which started the day in fourth place in the Valley standings, reeled off six unanswered points from there to regain a 19-18 advantage before Marcus Marshall pushed the home club back on top at the 3:07 mark with a pair of charity shots. Thurman knocked down a 14-footer after that, and Christian Kirk ended a 5-0 Bears' spurt with a free throw that made it 23-20 with just under two minutes to go.

Troy Taylor and Jaylon Moore scored just before the intermission for the Aces to mark the eighth lead change of the half.

The Bears were 6-for-22 (.273) from the field, 0-for-5 from bonus distance and 11-for-15 (.733) from the line. The Bears were out-rebounded 19-15 with both teams committing five turnovers.

Evansville was led by Taylor's six points. As a team, UE was 10-for-28 (.357) overall and 2-of-9 (.222) from beyond the arc with a 2-for-4 (.400) effort at the line.



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