Illinois State Cools Down UNI In Second-half, 76-67
The Illinois State Redbirds cooled off the UNI Panthers in the second half en route to a 76-67 victory at Redbird Arena on Saturday (Jan. 23, 2016).
UNI dropped its fourth straight game to fall to 10-11 overall and 2-6 in the Missouri Valley Conference despite a game-high 23 points from senior guard Wes Washpun. Washpun made 8-of-13 shots from the field and handed out a six assists against the Redbirds.
Illinois State (11-10 overall, 5-3 MVC) got 18 points from MiKyle McIntosh, 16 points from Paris Lee and 15 points off the bench by Justin McCloud. The Redbirds drained 12-of-30 3-point shots in the victory.
UNI shot 60.7 percent from the field in the first half by making 17-of-28 field goals. The Panthers cooled off to 33.3 percent in the second half by making only 9-of-27 shots. UNI shot 47.3 percent for the game. UNI made 8-of-28 from three-point land, which included a stretch in the second half when the Panthers made one of its first 11 three-point shots.
UNI led by as many as eight points in the first half at 14-6 with 13:29 left. McCloud entered the game at that point and drained three consecutive three-pointers to gave the Redbirds a 15-14 lead with 12:03 left in the half.
McCloud would add another triple with 10:22 on the clock to give Illinois State a 21-19 advantage. UNI made 17 field goals in the first half but still trailed Illinois State, 40-38.
The Panthers made four field goals in the opening 5:28 of the second half, but then did not record another made basket until Matt Bohannon drained a three-pointer with 3:36 left in the game.
UNI missed 14 consecutive field goals from the 14:32 mark to the 3:36 mark of the second half. In that nearly 11 minutes of second-half action, Washpun made five free throws to account for the Panthers points in that stretch.
Washpun made a jumper with 14:32 to pull UNI to within 49-47. Illinois State went on a 19-5 run when UNI failed to record a field goal in that second-half spurt.
UP NEXT: UNI goes back to the state of Illinois on Wednesday for an 8 p.m. game against the Bradley Braves at Carver Arena in Peoria.