MSSU Men Keep Momentum Against MWSU - KOAM TV 7

MSSU Men Keep Momentum Against MWSU



Joplin, Mo. – The Missouri Southern men's basketball team unleashed a fierce full-court press late in the second half and erased a nine-point lead for Missouri Western as the Lions took out the Griffons 72-66 on Robert Corn Court inside the Leggett & Platt Center.
Southern (9-6, 4-2 MIAA) was led by 21 points and seven rebounds from Elyjah ClarkCJ Carr had 19 points, seven boards and six assists, while LJ Ross had a double-double with 10 points and 12 rebounds.
Western (3-10, 1-5 MIAA) had three in double-figures, led by 19 points for Lavon Hightower.
The Griffons opened up a 6-3 lead early on, but after a foul and a technical on Western, Southern tied the game at six with 15:19 to play. A three from Carr with 13:51 left in the half gave the Lions a 12-10 lead.
Western took a 15-12 lead with 12:10 left after a three from Cole Clearman, but the Lions answered right back with a three from Clark the next trip down. A layup from Christian Bundy with 10:30 tied the game at 17 and a steal and a fast-break bucket from Braelon Walker gave the Lions a 19-17 lead with just more than ten left on the clock.
Western led 28-24 with 4:30 to go in the half, but a three from Parker Jennings with 3:25 to go tied the game at 28 and a three from Clark with 53 seconds left gave the Lions a 33-30 lead and forced a Western timeout. The Griffons tied it at 33 with a three of their own and that would prove to bet the halftime score.
A free throw from the Griffons with just more than 15 on the clock broke a 35 all tie, but a layup from Carr the next trip down gave the Lions the 37-36 lead with 15:45 to go. A three from Walker put the Lions up 39-38 with 14:10 to go, but the Griffons went on an 8-0 run to lead 46-39 and force a Southern timeout.
A three pointer from Koray Gilbert with just more than 10 on the clock stopped a nearly four-minute drought for the Lions and cut the Griffons' lead to six (48-42). A layup from Christian Bundy with 4:18 left got the Lions within three (59-56) and a three from Clark with 3:37 left tied the game at 59.
After a defensive stop for the Lions a three the next trip down from Clark gave the Lions a 62-59 lead with 2:41 to play. A three from Carr gave the Lions a 65-61 lead with 1:47 left, but a three the next trip down for the Griffons got Western within one (65-64) with 1:28 left. Clark hit another three as the shot clock was winding down to push the lead to 68-64 with under a minute to go, and a pair of free throws from Clark with 25 seconds left gave the Lions a 70-64 lead.
The Lions shot 37 percent from the floor and made 5-10 from long-range in the second half. Southern out rebounded the Griffons 47-35, including 21 offensive boards that led to 18 second-chance points.

Southern will be back in action on January 11 as the Lions will travel to Lindenwood for a 7:30 pm tip off.

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