Missouri State looks to kick off 2013-14 season on right foot with trip to Norfolk
Nov. 6, 2013
Missouri State Game Notes
Old Dominion Game Notes
Missouri State Bears (0-0) at Old Dominion (0-0)
Date: Friday, Nov. 8, 2013
Kickoff: 6:07 p.m. (Central)
Location: Norfolk, Va.
Site: Ted Constant Convocation Center (8,472)
Series: ODU leads 1-0 (first meeting in Norfolk)
TV: KCZ, The Ozarks CW (Ned Reynolds, Kelby Stuckey
Radio: KTXR (101.3 FM) (Art Hains, Mike Keltner) and MSU Bears Radio Network
Live Stats: Live Stats
Live Video: Monarch Video
Listen Live: RadioSpringfield.com
Tickets: Game 1 Tickets
THE TEN COUNT
- Missouri State is 7-1 all-time in BracketBusters return games (4-0 on the road). MSU will host Eastern Michigan next season in its final return game in the now-defunct ESPN BracketBusters series.
- Marcus Marshall (So., G, St. Paul, Minn.) became just the second MSU player to earn Missouri Valley Conference Freshman of the Year honors when he led all Valley freshmen in scoring (11.5 ppg) last year. He was also part of the MVC All-Newcomer Team in 2012-13 and one of seven players named to the 2013-14 Preseason All-MVC squad.
- Last year, MSU got 43.5 percent of its points and 78 starts from its six freshmen. The 855 points scored by the "Super Six" frosh ranked 22nd nationally among all Division I programs and was the top collective freshman scoring effort in MSU history. The Bears also ranked 18th nationally in freshman scoring percentage.
- In its two preseason exhibition games, the Bears' bench players averaged 60.0 points per game.
- MSU averaged 10.18 turnovers per game last season, the fifth-best average in the nation and best in the MVC.
- Nathan Scheer (Sr., G/F, Washington, Mo.) is the most seasoned MSU veteran with 100 games under his belt.
- Paul Lusk is 2-0 in season openers as the Bears' head coach, including a 68-46 road win at Nevada in 2011.
- After missing the 2012-13 season with a knee injury, Jarmar Gulley (Sr., F, Beaumont, Texas) returns for his senior campaign. He was a three-time MVC Newcomer of the Week in 2011-12 and averaged 10.4 points and 5.8 rebounds.
- Kent Bazemore scored 28 points to help lead ODU past MSU (2/18/12) in the only previous game between the teams.
- Christian Kirk (Jr., F, Springfield, Mo.) averaged 10.6 ppg over the Bears' last eight games in 2012-13.
The Bears and Monarchs have met just once previously with Old Dominion scoring a 73-67 win at JQH Arena in Springfield on Feb. 18, 2012 in the ESPN BracketBusters series. The national audience on ESPNU saw ODU knock down 12 3-pointers in a game that was otherwise a statistical dead heat. Kent Bazemore scored a game-high 28 points and was 4-for-5 from long range to led the Monarchs' efforts.
The Bears, who rallied to pull within 70-67 with 68 seconds left, got 15 points from former standout Kyle Weems, while Jarmar Gulley scored 13 points and snagged a team-high 6 rebounds. Keith Pickens also added 11 points and 5 rebounds, while Christian Kirk went 2-for-3 with a dunk in a starting role.
COACH Paul Lusk
Paul Lusk (Southern Illinois, 1995) is 27-38 (.415) in his third season at MSU and 29-61 (.322) in his fourth season overall as a head coach. He is 16-20 in MVC games (10-7 at home, 6-13 on the road), 1-2 in MVC Tournament games and 11-17 in non-conference play (6-6 at JQH Arena, 4-6 away and 1-5 at neutral sites). He is also 16-14 in all home games, 10-18 on the road, and 1-6 at neutral sites. He is 0-1 against Old Dominion.
The 41-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.
On Oct. 29, Missouri State got a game-high 17 points from Marcus Marshall and 12 off the bench from sophomore classmate Gavin Thurman to turn back visiting Missouri Southern, 93-80, in exhibition basketball play.
The Bears got 56 points from their bench players and out-rebounded MSSU by a 51-39 margin.
Cameron Cornelius scored 16 and Marquis Addison added 14 for Missouri Southern.
In the first half, the Lions had an answer every time the Bears threatened to pull away. After a pair of free throws by Marshall with just under six minutes remaining in the stanza gave Missouri State its biggest lead of the half at 30-22, the Lions stormed back with a 3-pointer by Jordan Talbert and a pair of free throws by Slim Magee to get back within three. MSSU would cut its deficit to 36-34 on a charity shot by Cornelius with 2:50 to go in the period, but the home team ended the half on a 7-4 run, including impressive runs to the rim by Devon Thomas and Nathan Scheer, to lead 43-38 at the break.
In the second half, MSU used an 8-0 run less than three minutes into the period to push its advantage to 53-42 as Marshall knocked down a 20-footer and scored a traditional 3-point play, while Keith Pickens made 3-of-4 free throws.
Midway through the half, the Bears used a 13-5 spurt to gain their biggest advantage of the night at 77-58. Thurman had a spinning move to the basket and a long 3-pointer, while newcomers Ron Mvouika and Tyler McCullough scored four apiece to give MSU a 19-point lead with 9:17 left in the game.
The Lions were game and posted a late rally of their own outscoring Missouri State 15-3 over the next three minutes to pull within 80-73 with six-and-a-half minutes remaining. But Marshall responded in crunch time as he posted six points in the final six minutes, Scheer knocked down a long 3-pointer, and Pickens put it out of reach with a baseline dunk in the final minute.
Mvouika led MSU with 8 rebounds, while Devon Thomas dished out 5 assists, and Pickens scored 10 points, blocked 5 shots and had 3 steals. The Bears, who had 12 players in the scoring column, scored 50 points in the paint and never trailed after the 15:03 mark of the first half.
MSSU snagged 19 offensive rebounds that led to 20 second-chance points