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Illinois State (2-1)
11/19/2011 | Normal, Ill. (Doug Collins Court at RBA) | Attendance: 3841
Saturday, November 19, 2011
NORMAL, Ill. – In the second half of Saturday’s basketball game at Illinois State, a young Lipscomb squad showed they could execute and challenge a difficult opponent.
After falling behind by double-digits at halftime the Bisons couldn’t complete the comeback effort though falling 78-70 at Redbird Arena.
“It’s hard when you’re trying to run uphill the whole second half,” said head coach Scott Sanderson. “After a while you run out of gas.
“I was very proud of how our guys competed. We have a very young team and we have to keep working to get better.”
Lipscomb averaged 22.7 turnovers entering Saturday’s contest. The Bisons struggled to control the basketball in the first stanza leading to nine turnovers and, more importantly, 16 points for the Redbirds.
In the second half Lipscomb cut its turnovers down to four.
“You have to be able to take care of the ball and rebound,” said Sanderson.
The Bisons had the second part of the equation leading a bigger Illinois State team in rebounding 38-33. Lipscomb had 14 offensive rebounds
Sophomore Robert Boyd scored a career-high 21 points for the Bisons. He connected on five 3-pointers, also a career-best. Freshmen Zavion Williams had 18 points and freshman Malcolm Smith added 11 points off the bench.
Lipscomb’s struggles from the free throw line returned. The Bisons dropped a 74-71 contest Sunday to Garnder-Webb after missing eight straight free throws in the second half.
The Bisons were three-of-nine from the line Saturday while Illinois State was 22-of-28 on free shots.
Less than six minutes into the game the Redbirds had taken a 13-6 lead. The Bisons would commit four fouls over the next two minutes to push Illinois State into the bonus with 12 minutes to play in the first half.
The Redbirds’ lead hovered around 10 points for almost the rest of the half. Sophomore Jacob Arnett and junior Deonte Alexander hit a pair of treys to cut the Redbirds’ advantage to five with 4:34 before intermission. A three by Illinois State’s Tyler Brown ended the Bisons’ short run.
Brown, returning from a suspension, scored a team-high 19 points off the bench.
Illinois State led 41-30 at halftime. Lipscomb opened the second period with an 8-2 run over the first three minutes.
Zavion Williams and Boyd hit back to back three around the 14-minute mark of the second half. A minute later Zavion made a layup and two possessions later Illinois State turned the ball over leading to a 3-point play by Malcolm Smith to cut the contest to two, 51-49, with 12:03 left.
The Bisons cut Illinois State’s lead to one point twice. Boyd hit his fifth 3-pointer with 7:54 remaining to make it a 59-58 contest. After two Redbird free throws, Zavion Williams had a layup.
An Illinois State layup and then two straight threes put the Redbirds back in control of the momentum with five minutes to play.
Lipscomb was 29-of-66 from the field for 43.9 percent and 9-of-26 from beyond the arc for 34.6 percent. Illinois State shot 49 percent overall.
Lipscomb drops to 1-3 while Illinois State improves to 2-1.
The Bisons fly from Chicago to Cancun Sunday for the final two games of the Cancun Challenge. Lipscomb faces SIU Edwardsville Tuesday at 12:30. The Lipscomb Sports Network presented by Jackson will carry the game in Middle Tennessee on 102.5 The Game.