Southeast Missouri State University student publication

Southeast men's basketball team snaps three game losing streak against SIUE 76-55

Friday, February 8, 2013

In addition to snapping a three game losing streak in the Ohio Valley Conference, Southeast Missouri State University men's basketball beat SIU Edwardsville 76-55 on Thursday at the Show Me Center. Southeast guard Marland Smith also broke the school's all-time career record with 220 total 3-point field goals made.

"I wanted to go ahead and get it out of the way," Smith said. "I got some shots off and they went down and I got the record. It's a great accomplishment. That was one of my goals when I first got here. It feels great to achieve that goal."

Smith dropped in 13 points on the night and grabbed six rebounds.

Southeast improved to 12-13 and 4-7 in the Ohio Valley Conference. The Cougars fell to 8-12 and 4-6.

"The guys really played well tonight," Southeast coach Dickey Nutt said. "Any time you lose a bunch of games like we have in the last couple weeks, it's easy to doubt yourself. I told them, just try to get through that wall."

Even though the Redhawks won, the team started off a little cold when they let SIUE forward Jerome Jones score 19 points within the first 10 minutes of the first half.

"I tell you he was a special player tonight, he's a really good player," Nutt said. "Our game plan was to play man-to-man or zone against him, but he hit a couple in a row. Before I knew it he had 19 points at halftime. Then we went to a box-and-one and I think it threw him off a little bit."

Jones finished with 31 points and grabbed eight rebounds for the Cougars.

"I told them at halftime, he can continue to get his points as long as we continue to stop everybody else and I thought we did just that," Nutt said.

With seven minutes, and 28 seconds left in the first half, the Redhawks climbed their way back to tie it up 26-26. After a stop on the other end of the court of the next possession, Smith added a 3-pointer to put the Redhawks by three more points.

The Redhawks sailed in the rest of the first half and had their largest lead 41-30 with 1:53 left, then the Cougars made a two point bucket before halftime to make it 41-32.

The Redhawks held the Cougars to 34.3 percent in the first half.

Entering the second half, SIUE cut it close when guard Ray Lester made two free throws to pull within two, 44-42, in the first five minutes. Southeast responded on a 15-0 run when Smith nailed a 3-pointer to put the Redhawks up 57-42 with 13:20 left in the game.

As the game seemed to be in control for the Redhawks, Southeast guard Corey Wilford assisted the pass to Smith, who made another 3-pointer jumper with 7:23 remaining 66-54. It was the bucket that broke the school's all-time career record with 220 3-point field goals made.

"Marland, congratulations to him for breaking that record," Nutt said.

Southeast forward Nino Johnson scored in double figures, recording 17 points, 12 rebounds and seven blocks in the game.

"I thought Nino Johnson was very good tonight," Nutt said. "I love the way he responded, not just to play, but off the floor in practice. He was really a force tonight with lots of energy."

Southeast forward Tyler Stone also added 12 points and four rebounds for the team.

Southeast shot 46.4 percent from the field and outrebounded the Cougars 42-35. The Redhawks also dished out 18 assists for the night.

Southeast's next game will be against Eastern Illinois at 5:30 p.m. Saturday at the Show Me Center.

"Eastern Illinois is really good, they've found their niche," Nutt said. "They play well together. They'll run that Princeton offense, they'll run that flex offense to death. Defensively they're really good. They are going to be coming in here riding high with a lot of confidence."