EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. - Four players scored in double figures Saturday night as Southern Illinois University Edwardsville rolled to a 74-40 win over Robert Morris-Springfield in men's basketball at the Vadalabene Center.
"Any time you're struggling like we are, you're always going to be happy with a win," SIUE Head Coach Lennox Forrester said. The 40 points scored by the Eagles is the fewest allowed by SIUE this season. The Cougars improved to 7-19 with the victory while Robert Morris dropped to 12-14 with the loss.
SIUE scored the first four points and eight of the first 10 points and never trailed in the game. The Cougars built a nine-point lead (14-5) by the first media timeout and then pushed the lead to 15 when Michael Messer hit one of two free throws to make it 22-7 with 11:01 left in the half.
The Eagles' Anthony Patton hit a three-pointer with 8:08 to play in the half to cut the lead to 11 at 24-13 before the Cougars opened it up. SIUE outscored Robert Morris 15-2 over the rest of the half to lead 39-15 at the break.
The Cougars pushed the lead to 28 with another quick start to the second half. Nikola Bundalo scored the first six points after the intermission for SIUE. The senior center led all scorers with 16 points. He also grabbed seven rebounds.
Cornelius Chatt (13), Michael Messer (13) and Kevin Stineman (10) all scored in double figures in the win. For Chatt, it marked the eighth consecutive game and the 15th time this season, he has scored in double digits. Messer and Stineman have each scored 10 or more points in back-to-back games.
SIUE led by as many as 35 in the second half when Anthony Mitchell hit a lay-up with 13:05 to play made it 56-21. Mitchell finished with eight points and a career-high eight rebounds.
Trey David led the way for the Eagles with 15 points. Patton chipped in 11 and eight rebounds.
The Cougars outrebounded Robert Morris 47-24. SIUE collected 17 offensive boards for 17 second-chance points.
"Actually we had 17 offensive boards because we missed some shots," Forrester said. "But I appreciate that our guys made the effort to get to it to get the second chance."
The Cougars will have more than a week off before they travel to play their final road game of the year Sun., Feb. 20 at South Dakota. Tipoff is set for 1 p.m.