MURRAY, Ky. -- A.J. Jones had 20 points and six rebounds as Southeast Missouri State topped Ohio Valley Conference rival Murray State 84-68 Saturday.
Corey Wilford added 16 in each team's regular-season finale.
Southeast Missouri State (16-15, 8-8) jumped to a 22-11 lead, led 47-39 at halftime and never surrendered the advantage.
The Redhawks shot 50 perfect (26 of 52) from the field and 63 percent (12 of 19) from the perimeter while holding Murray State to 36 percent (23 of 64) from the paint and 42 percent (10 of 24) from 3-point range.
Isaiah Canaan had 22 points for Murray State (20-9, 10-6), leaving him with 1,999 points in his career.
In Canaan's last home game, he let teammate and fellow senior Jordan Burge take his spot in the starting lineup. Burge, who walked on as a freshman, has 105 career wins and three OVC championship rings, but no points.
Out of the Redhawks' first 13 points, Jones scored 11 with three consecutive 3-pointers.
Southeast Missouri State pulled ahead 21-11 with a Wilford trey less than 9 minutes into the first half.
Stacy Wilson and Canaan, first in the league and eighth nationally with 21.5 points per game, hit back-to-back 3 pointers to pull the Racers within four points until Wilford answered with a trey of his own. Murray State's Jeffery Moss responded with yet another 3 to make the score 28-24 with 8:20 remaining in the half.
Just over a minute later, Moss connected on another 3 and Canaan picked up a basket and a free throw to pull the Racers within two points.
Canaan, who owns the school record for consecutive games with a made 3-pointer with 39 games, put the Racers up 33-32 after a 3-pointer, but their first lead since 18 seconds into the game was short lived as Southeast Missouri State countered with a 3 from Wilford and two free throws and a jumper by Nino Johnson.
Nick Niemczyk's 3-pointer set the eight-point halftime advantage for the Redhawks.
Coming out of the break, Brandon Garrett dunked to decrease the Redhawks' lead to six, but it wasn't enough as Southeast Missouri State went on a 12-5 run.
With 10:17 remaining, Moss hit a jumper to end Murray State's 4-minute scoreless streak and bumped the score to 62-49.
Treys by Wilson and Canaan and a tip-in and free throw by Latreze Mushatt made the score 64-58 before Jones ended the Redhawks' 3-minute drought with a 3-pointer with 5:23 on the clock.
Maryland point guard Melo Trimble, considered a lock to leave the program before struggling in the second half last season, has withdrawn from the NBA draft and will return for his junior season.
Louisville's Chinanu Onuaku, who recently underwent a medical procedure to correct a heart rhythm issue detected during the combine, will keep his name in the NBA draft pool.
Andrew White III will return to the Nebraska men's basketball team next season after removing his name from the NBA draft.
|Southeast Missouri State||2-14||8||5-24|