Missouri State’s Adam Leonard scored a game-high 24 points and matched a career-best with seven three-pointers to lead the Bears to a 75-59 home win over Drake in Missouri Valley Conference play Wednesday.
Leonard finished 7-for-11 from beyond the arc to help the Bears (19-10, 8-9) avenge an earlier loss to the Bulldogs. As a team, MSU was 10-for-20 (.500) from three-point range, its best distance percentage since the league opener at Evansville on Dec. 29.
After tallying three treys in the first half, Leonard started the second half scoring with his fourth three-pointer of the night to expand the Bears’ 33-29 halftime lead to seven points. Kyle Weems reeled off the next eight points by the Bears to help Missouri State to a 46-32 advantage, just over four minutes into the second period.
Drake (13-17, 7-10) whittled its deficit to nine on a three-pointer by Ben Simons at the 12:17 mark, but Leonard answered with two more long-range bombs over the next three minutes to answer the threat.
The Bulldogs made one more late run when Josh Young, who finished with 20 points, knocked down his team’s sixth and final three-pointer of the night with 5:35 remaining. Leonard had the answer again on the Bears’ next drive, dropping in a short jumper before delivering the dagger with 2:34 on the clock with his seventh three.
Leonard’s seven three-pointers was one shy of tying a Missouri State record, done four times previously. The most-recent Bear to hit eight threes in a game was Kevin Ault on Feb. 15, 1998. Leonard also hit seven long-range shots at Southern Illinois on Feb. 3 and once while playing with Eastern Kentucky in 2008.
courtesy of Missouri State athletics