EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. - Southeast Missouri connected on 62 percent of its shots in the second half Saturday en route to an 85-72 win over SIUE in Ohio Valley Conference men's basketball. The loss snapped a two-game winning streak for the Cougars.
SEMO improved to 14-11 overall and 9-4 in OVC play with the win while the Cougars fell to 7-15 overall and 5-8 in the OVC.
"We made a lot of mistakes defensively," SIUE Head Coach Lennox Forrester said. "They did a good job making shots and hurting us when we made those mistakes."
Four SIUE players scored in double figures, led by 20 points from freshman Kris Davis. Davis was 7 of 14 from the field, including 4 of 6 from three-point range. Davis increased his NCAA-leading three-point percentage to .605.
"We still have to earn our stripes in this conference," Forrester added. "I did not like our attitude towards the game or our intensity in the game."
The two teams traded baskets through much of the first half, which included eight lead changes. The two teams were tied three times in the first period. The Cougars' largest lead in the half came after a pair of free throws by Derian Shaffer made it 17-9 SIUE with 14:20 to play before halftime. SEMO followed with a 14-0 run, capped off by a Marland Smith three-pointer to make it 23-17 with 10:08 before half. The Redhawks led 38-33 at the break.
Smith led three Redhawks in double figures with 30 points to equal his career high. Tyler Stone added 20 points. Smith and Stone each pulled down nine rebounds to pace SEMO. Nick Niemczyk scored 11 points.
SIUE got as close three points in the second half after a jumper from Jones with 8:24 to play made it 63-60. The Redhawks quickly stretched the lead to nine (70-61) with a Michael Porter layup with 5:58.
The Redhawks hit 31 of 58 shots to shoot 53.4 percent from the field for the game. In the second half, SEMO hit 18 of 29 attempts. The Cougars connected on 24 of 60 shots for 40 percent. The two teams each finished with 33 rebounds.
"We had some guys that scored in double figures tonight, but at the same time we took some bad shots offensively," Forrester said.
SIUE next travels to Charleston for a game at Eastern Illinois. Tipoff Wednesday is set for 7 p.m.