TERRE HAUTE —
After three consecutive lackluster halves, Indiana State’s men’s basketball team was at a crossroads.
Down four to Missouri State at halftime on its home floor, the Sycamores could either summon the intensity they had to start the Missouri Valley Conference season and solidify their spot in the league’s top half.
Or they could fade away and find themselves mired in a mid-conference dogfight.
The Sycamores chose the former and breathed easier after a 68-60 victory in front of 5,593 in Hulman Center on Wednesday.
ISU shot 61.9 percent and had just three turnovers in the second half. The much-improved effort and intensity helped ISU outscore Missouri State 41-29 after the break.
“We came out flat. We played three halves in a row where we didn’t play our brand of basketball. We realized in the second half that we don’t get games back,” ISU point guard Jake Odum said.
“Coming in, we wanted to impose our will on the offensive and defensive end and we did a much better job in the second half.”
ISU’s defense also played its part. The Sycamores were able to score at critical times off Missouri State mistakes. The Bears had 12 turnovers, but ISU also altered other Missouri State possessions with more deflections and better intensity in the second half. The Bears shot 15 percentage points worse in the second half than they did in the first.
“We felt, even going back last week to Bradley, that we haven’t had pressure on the ball. We got some deflections, we got turnovers and we got out in transition a little bit. We were just playing better,” ISU coach Greg Lansing said.
ISU (11-6, 4-2) also had enviable balance. Down the roster sheet, ISU’s individual scoring was 10,10,10,10, 8, 7, 6, 4 and 3. Indiana State’s rebounding? It went 4, 4, 4, 3, 3 and 3.
Manny Arop, Justin Gant, Devonte Brown and Dawon Cummings each had 10 points. Arop, Brown and Cummings each had four rebounds.
The Sycamores chased their tails in the first half as they trailed for its entirety. Missouri State started swingman Gavin Thurman for just the second time this season and the freshman scored the first nine points of the game for the Bears.
ISU closed the gap to 17-16, but Missouri State’s 10-2 run gave the Bears a nine-point lead. ISU closed the gap to 31-27 by halftime, but the Sycamores were hurt by the inability to consistently defend during the Bears’ long offensive possessions. Missouri State shot 56 percent in the first half.
ISU attacked the basket with more zest in the second half. ISU tied it less than two minutes into the contest with all of the scoring opportunities either coming via penetration or from inside-out passes.
ISU took the lead for good on a Cummings 3-pointer with 16:26 left. A 19-6 start to the second half was capped by a stretch where Arop scored seven ISU points in succession. ISU led 46-37.
“I think it was a difference of pace. They imposed their will with a low-paced game [in the first half]. In the second half, Dawon started and it helped speed the game up. I think that’s what got us the win,” Brown said.
Missouri State (5-13, 3-3) was held at arm’s length the rest of the way, but the Sycamores couldn’t pull away from the Bears either, a familiar pattern for the Sycamores this season. ISU’s biggest lead — a 60-46 advantage — came with 3:38 left and it seemed ISU had put a stake in Missouri State’s heart.
But finishing teams hasn’t been ISU’s strong point. ISU struggled again at the line — the Sycamores converted 7 of 13 in the final two minutes, a statistic that would have hurt ISU more had Missouri State not shot 1 of 4 at the line in the same stretch.
Still, Missouri State had a smidgen of hope when Nathan Scheer buried a long 3-pointer with 27 seconds left to make it 66-60.
After ISU’s Lucas Eitel missed a pair at the line, Scheer missed another long 3 and Cummings drained a pair of free throws with 10.6 seconds left to put the game away.
The difficulty in finishing another team off was a sore spot in an otherwise bright second-half effort.
“It’s frustrating. I don’t know if we let up or if the other team steps up more, but good teams put teams away and we haven’t been able to do a good job of that. It starts with me, I have to hit free throws and others do too,” Odum said.
Lansing has taken notice of the late-game struggles too.
“We’ve done it in nearly all of the games we’ve won. We could probably put teams away a bit better with possession basketball, making free throws and by not putting them at the free-throw line. We have to get better down the stretch,” Lansing said.
ISU next plays host to Evansville on Saturday. The Purple Aces fell into a third-place tie with the Sycamores as they lost 83-69 at Drake on Wednesday.
TERRE HAUTE —
After three consecutive lackluster halves, Indiana State’s men’s basketball team was at a crossroads.
Metro: Former Miss Softball joins Purdue staff
Terre Haute North graduate Megan Ciolli Bartlett, the state’s 2001 Miss Softball and a two-time All-American at Notre Dame, is joining the Purdue coaching staff.
Metro: ISU graduate Johnson sixth in shot at Monaco
Indiana State graduate Felisha Johnson competed in her first International Association of Athletics Federations Diamond League track and field meeting Friday, placing sixth in a shot put competition that featured six of the top seven throwers in the world for 2014.
A.J. Reed makes it 5 for 5 in college baseball awards with Golden Spikes Award
When it came down to it, college baseball’s electors agreed that there was no award Terre Haute’s A.J. Reed didn’t deserve for his remarkable 2014 season at Kentucky.
Reed was selected Thursday as the 2014 Golden Spikes Award winner, given annually to the top amateur player in the nation by USA Baseball, making Reed a unanimous pick as the national player of the year.
MVC to shift women's basketball tournament to Moline, Ill.
The Missouri Valley Conference Women’s Basketball Tournament will move 90 miles farther from Terre Haute beginning in 2016, the league announced Thursday.
Metro: ISU-IU football game to be on ESPNEWS
Indiana University announced Wednesday that the season opening game between Indiana State and IU will be played at noon on Sept. 30.
Riley 10s go 4-1, place second in state tourney
Riley’s 10-and-under all-star team finished as runner-up over the weekend at the Cal Ripken baseball Central Indiana tournament.
Odum heads for Vegas with Kings summer team
Terre Haute native Jake Odum scored three points in the Indiana Pacers’ 84-74 victory on Thursday over the Miami Heat in the Orlando Summer League.
Odum has 5 points for Pacers in summer play
Former Indiana State standout Jake Odum contributed five points, three assists and a steal in 15 minutes on the court Wednesday for the Indiana Pacers summer league team.
MVC Tournament staying in St. Louis until 2018
Missouri Valley Conference men's tournament staying in St. Louis until 2018.
College report: Former Patriot runner Mundy is ‘proud to be a Hoosier’
After redshirting the indoor and outdoor track and field seasons this year, Chanli Mundy was eager to do one thing recently as she prepared to compete in the USATF Junior Outdoor Track and Field Championships at Eugene, Oregon. “The biggest thing I’m looking forward to is being able to wear an IU uniform,” she said last week prior to making her cross-country trip.
Odum scores 2 points off bench for Pacers
Three of the top picks in last month’s draft are adjusting to NBA at different speeds at the Orlando Pro Summer League.
Terre Haute's A.J. Reed joins Manziel as an SEC Athlete of Year
University of Kentucky baseball star A.J. Reed of Terre Haute and Florida softball standout Hannah Rogers have been named 2013-14 Roy F. Kramer Southeastern Conference Male and Female Athletes of the Year, according to a voting by the league’s athletics directors.
“A.J. and Hannah are true examples of outstanding student-athletes,” SEC commissioner Mike Slive said Tuesday. “They have competed at the highest level of collegiate athletics, and through their hard work, dedication and commitment to excellence, have been successful in their endeavors. They are fine representatives of their universities and this conference.”
A new era: ‘Bittersweet day’ as Loyd takes over for ailing Shaw as Rose-Hulman men’s basketball coach
Rose-Hulman President James Conwell couldn’t have been more accurate Monday afternoon when he called it “a bittersweet day” for his school.
Reed adds two-way award to collection
Seeking to become the third unanimous national Player of the Year in Southeastern Conference history, Terre Haute’s A.J. Reed has been named winner of the 2014 John Olerud Award, given annually to the nation’s top two-way player, according to an announcement Friday from the College Baseball Hall of Fame.
Metro: ISU’s Wise starts out well in USATF championships
Indiana State sprinter Katie Wise advanced to the semifinals of the women’s 100 meters as she ran 11.42 seconds in the opening heat of the event Thursday evening at the USA Track & Field Outdoor Championships.
ISU's Odum talks about agreeing to play for Pacers' summer-league team
No team selected him in the two-round NBA draft Thursday night, but Terre Haute native and four-year Indiana State basketball standout Jake Odum agreed Friday to play for the Indiana Pacers’ summer-league squad next month.
Steady success: ISU continued to climb ladder with one of its best overall seasons ever
First of all, if you’re an Indiana State fan, stand up and applaud. The Sycamores collectively went where only one Sycamore athletic department went before in 2013-14. ISU finished second in the Missouri Valley Conference All-Sports Trophy standings. ISU recorded a score of 3.538, its highest in school history.
Metro roundup: Odum to work out with Lakers
Terre Haute native and former Indiana State guard Jake Odum will have two more workouts before next Thursday’s NBA Draft. Odum will work out with the Los Angeles Lakers today. Odum will have a second workout with the Orlando Magic next week before the draft.
Terre Haute’s Reed earns 4th national honor
Recent University of Kentucky standout A.J. Reed has been named National Player of the Year and first-team All-America, according to an announcement made Wednesday afternoon by the American Baseball Coaches Association.
Swift breaks ISU hurdles record, takes fourth place at NCAAs
Senior Greggmar Swift broke the school record in the 110 meter hurdles, as Indiana State picked up two All-Americans in the final day of the 2014 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships. Swift’s five points in the event gave the men’s team five points for the meet and a 44th place finish in the nation. The women got 3 points from Mary Theisen in the shot put to place 51st in the nation.
A.J. Reed chosen as 28th Dick Howser Trophy recipient
University of Kentucky junior pitcher/first baseman A.J. Reed, who enjoyed possibly the greatest individual season in UK history in 2014, is the 28th recipient of the Dick Howser Trophy, presented by Easton Foundations, as college baseball’s Player of the Year.
The presentation was made Saturday during a national news conference at TD Ameritrade Park, site of the 2014 College World Series.
New ISU coach Parker makes first impression
Indiana State assistant coach Terry Parker hasn’t had too much time to make a first impression.
Officially hired in late April, but identified as Dave Ragland’s replacement on Greg Lansing’s staff long before that, there haven’t been many team activities for Parker to take part in since he joined ISU’s staff from Utah Valley.
Greggmar Swift advances to NCAA hurdles final
Greggmar Swift advanced to the finals of the 110-meter hurdles to highlight Indiana State’s performances during day two of the NCAA Outdoor Championships at Hayward Field.
Terre Haute's Mascari earns All-American finish in 10,000 meters
Indiana State sophomore John Mascari finished 11th in the NCAA Championships in the 10,000-meter run Wednesday night at historic Hayward Field.
Reed signs with Astros
A.J. Reed’s Wednesday was already pretty good when he was named Baseball America’s College Player of the Year in the morning. In the afternoon, it got even better for the Terre Haute native. The Houston Astros, who drafted Reed with the first pick of the second round in last week’s Major League Baseball draft, announced that they had agreed to a deal with Reed. According to several sources, Reed signed his deal for $1.35 million.
Metro sports: Cassell wins Lawrence County title
Chris Cassell put together two rounds of 4-under-par 68 for a two-shot victory for his first Albright Motors Lawrence County Open championship on Sunday.
Pair of Sycamores selected in Major League Baseball draft
Two Indiana State baseball players were chosen in the 2014 Major League Baseball draft Saturday.
Senior shortstop Tyler Wampler, a 2010 graduate of West Vigo High School, went to the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 17th round (519th overall) and junior catcher Mike Fitzgerald went to the San Diego Padres in the 27th round (807th overall).
Ex-Sycamore Lutz begins NFL journey with Colts
The end of the journey. Or, really, just the beginning. That's how former Indiana State center FN Lutz described his emotions after signing a free-agent contract with the Indianapolis Colts on Wednesday morning.
Reed a top choice to be taken in MLB draft
While collegiate honors have poured in — and will likely continue to — for Terre Haute native A.J. Reed, the biggest night for him will likely be tonight.
Metro roundup: Terre Haute’s Reed is finalist for Golden Spikes Award
University of Kentucky junior left-handed pitcher/first baseman A.J. Reed has been named one of three finalists for the 2014 Golden Spikes Award, according to an announcement Tuesday by USA Baseball.
Already honored as the Collegiate Baseball National Player of the Year and as a first-team All-American, Reed was named one of three finalists for the Golden Spikes Award, which is annually presented by USA Baseball to the nation’s top amateur player for the last 36 seasons. Reed joins Oregon State outfielder Michael Conforto and LSU right-hander Aaron Nola as finalists for the award, which is selected from a committee of more than 200 voters.
- More College Headlines
- Metro: Former Miss Softball joins Purdue staff