The SMS men were hoping to snap Southern Illinois’ 23-game home winning streak against conference opponents, but fell short in a 59-52 loss in Carbondale. The Bears trailed by as many as 17 points in the second half but battled back and trailed 41-40 with 8:53 to go in the game. But SMS missed five crucial free throws after cutting the lead to a point and hit just 52 percent of their shots from the charity stripe. Merrill Andrews led SMS with 15 points, while freshman Nathan Bilyeu added eight points and eight rebounds. The Bears fell to 14-8 overall and 6-5 in the Missouri Valley Conference. The Salukis are 17-2 and 11-0.
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