The Evansville Aces hit 12 three pointers and beat the Missouri State Bears 70-64 Wednesday night at JQH Arena.
The Aces trailed by nine points in the first half, only to make a late charge before intermission, getting a three pointer by Marty Hill as the horn sounded, giving the visitors a 30-29 edge at halftime.
Evansville extended its lead to six, 35-29, less than two minutes into the second half.
The Bears grabbed a 39-38 advantage when Kabir Mohammed hit a driving layup with 14:14 left in the game, then extended the lead to six when Jared Ridder knocked down a three pointer with more than nine minutes left to play.
But the Aces got treys from Shea Feehan and a pair of back to back three pointers from John Hall, taking the lead for good with 4:10 remaining.
Evansville extended the lead to four, 60-56, on Devan Straub’s three pointer at the 3:32 mark, then drove the nail in the Bear’s coffin with a miraculous trey by Evan Kuhlman as the shot clock was running out, making it 63-58 Evansville with 1:08 to play.
The Bears had a chance to pull closer, but Josh Webster and Mohammed went only two of four from the free throw line in the final minute, preserving the win for Evansville, who improves to 9-9 overall, 3-2 in the Missouri Valley Conference.
Missouri State drops to 8-10 on the season, two and three in the Valley.
MSU’s 6’8′ forward Tulio Da Silva finished with 14 points and 13 rebounds, while Cook added 14.
K.J. Riley’s 16 points led the way for Evansville, who as a team, connected on 18 of 23 free throw attempts, while the Bears were only 11-22 (50%) from the charity stripe.
The Bears travel to Drake for a Sunday game at 3:00 p.m.
Wednesday’s contest marked the 70th meeting overall between Missouri State and Evansville, with the series now knotted 35-35.
The Bears drop to 6-2 this season at The Q and have a 117-54 all time record at the facility, which opened in November, 2008.
Jarred Dixon scored seven points for the Bears, passing Andy Newton for the number 22 spot in all time scoring for the Bears.
Wednesday’s announced attendance at JQH Arena was 4,923.