The SMS Bears are one game away from an NCAA tournament birth. They advanced to the finals of the Missouri Valley Cnference Tournament on Sunday with an 80-74 win over 15th-ranked Southern Illinois in the semifinals. The teams battled to a 29-29 tie at the half, then the Bears exploded. For the second straight game, they eclipsed the 50-point mark in the second half, outscoring SIU 51-45 over the final 20 minutes. Merrill Andrews led SMS in scoring wtih 16 points–all 16 came in the second half. Anthony Shavies had and Blake Ahearn had 14 apiece while Tamarr Maclin had 12. Tonight SMS takes on Northern Iowa, as they go in search of their first MVC Tournament title since 1992.
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